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Weinstein Co, New York Attorney General in last-minute talks to avoid bankruptcy

Weinstein Co, New York Attorney General in last-minute talks to avoid bankruptcy

Contreras-Sweet first made a bid for the Weinstein Co.in November, with an investor group backed by billionaire investor Ron Burkle.

The group, led by Maria Contreras-Sweet, agreed to purchase more than 90 percent of the embattled film studio's assets, including its television business and catalog of films, according to The Wall Street Journal.

The sale of Weinstein Co. comes after months of dealing with the backlash from allegations of sexual misconduct and rape by Harvey Weinstein, who was sacked from the company in 2017. The bankruptcy filing would have halted the lawsuits filed by the women who accused the producer of sexual harassment, assault and other misconduct.

Our team is pleased to announce that we have taken an important step and have reached an agreement to purchase assets from The Weinstein Company in order to launch a new company, with a new board, and a new vision that embodies the principles that we have stood by since we began this process last fall.

Additionally, she said the agreement will "save about 150 jobs, protect the small businesses who are owed money and create a victims' compensation fund that would supplement existing insurance coverage for those who have been harmed".

The $500m being handed over includes an $80m compensation fund, and grants the investor group ownership of all the company's assets, including its 277 films.

"We consider this to be a positive outcome under what have been incredibly hard circumstances", the Weinstein Co. said Thursday.

A new name for the potential company has not been selected, reports Variety, though at one point the investors were said to be leaning toward "Wonder Hill".

She said the new company would have a new board, represent "the best practices in corporate governance and transparency" and amounted to "the best possible pathway to support victims and protect employees".

And two weeks ago, New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman filed a civil rights lawsuit against the Weinstein Co., stating that the studio "repeatedly broke New York law by failing to protect its employees from pervasive sexual harassment, intimidation, and discrimination".

On Sunday, the company complained that Contreras-Sweet's group had neither kept its side of the bargain on Schneiderman's principles nor paid interim funding required to run the business and maintain employees before the buyout was finalised.

Contreras-Sweet said her involvement was inspired to hire a majority-female board of directors by the #MeToo movement, which emerged in the wake of the Weinstein allegations.

Mr Weinstein is facing dozens of allegations of sexual abuse, including rape, but he denies non-consensual sex.

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