Big Idea Productions says it's looking for a buyer
Earlier this month, federal judge Barbara M.G. Lynn of Texas upheld the decision of a jury that Big Idea Productions, creators of the VeggieTales, owed a former distributor more than $11 million for breach of an unsigned contract. Christian Retailing reported last week that the amount owed Lyrick Productions "would cripple Big Idea without outside financial partners or an outright sale."
Big Idea founder and CEO Phil Vischer told Christian Retailing that he is now in talks with investors and could announce a move as early as this week. In the last year, Big Idea has had to downsize its staff considerably. Vischer told Christian Retailing that the company is now down to 45 employees. (Before the release of its first full-length feature film, Jonah: A VeggieTales Movie, Big Idea employed more than 200 people, both part time and full time.)
The decision to sell Big Idea comes as a surprise given Vischer's longtime commitment to creative control. Last year, then-COO Terry Botwick told CT, "In order to uphold the integrity of our vision and maintain creative control on Jonah, we made a corporate decision to not accept outside funding."
However, Vischer told Christian Retailing that the new business plan was necessary not only because they lost the suit, but also because they attempted to expand the company too quickly. "We got ourselves upside down financially when everything was working wonderfully," Vischer told Christian Retailing. "When things were doing so well, I thought that was God wanting us to expand, so we grew like crazy. Now I think it was more me having all these great ideas in my head and being so excited that I wanted to do them all at once."
A CT source said last ...1