Sorting Out Imagestate

Posted on 11/5/2007 by Jim Pickerell | Printable Version | Comments (0)

Imagestate Media has announced the receipt of £2 million (about $4.2) in investment capital from Beringea. The investment will enable Imagestate Media to further expand its already comprehensive digital content base and extend its offering of still images to motion and other rich media content.

Imagestate Media is an unrelated and legally separate company from the old Imagestate PLC that is set to be dissolved as of Jan. 12, 2008. Imagestate Media acquired some of the business assets from Kroll, the administrators of Imagestate PLC. These assets included the Web site, the digital image files included in that database and the rights to continue to market those images.

I asked Imagestate Media CEO Sheldon Marshall if there are plans to pay photographers for back sales made by Imagestate PLC and expressed the concern that once the company was dissolved, Imagestate Media would have no obligation to pay photographers for any licenses made prior to Kroll taking over the administration of Imagstate PLC on April 12, 2006.

<p">Marshall responded, “I am delighted that we have finally come to an agreement in our dispute with the receivers of the old Imagestate PLC and we are now in a position to resolve outstanding issues and payments with those photographers affected. I would like to thank our existing photographers and agents for their support during this transition and I expect a positive and successful relationship for all associated with the new company. Imagestate Media continues to aggressively market and promote both existing and new talent worldwide.” </p">

It is my understanding that shortly after April 12, 2006 some assets of Imagestate PLC were transferred to Imagestate Media; I assume Imagestate Media would be obligated to pay royalties on any licenses made of those assets after the transfer. It is clear that Imagestate Media has been making payments to a few photographers since that transfer of assets, but most photographers have received no payment.

It appears that part of the transfer of assets included the original photographer contracts with Imagestate PLC and with Pictor, Uniphoto, International Stock, Images Colour Library, Zepher, WestStock (including some images on Photodisc through WestStock) and other predecessor companies that were acquired by Imagestate PLC. It is not clear whether photographers now have the right to terminate those contracts and seek the return of their images. While Imagestate Media has more than one million digital images in its collection, it is believed that they have few, if any, film image from which many of these digital images were created. Most of the film images have been lost or disposed of in the series of transitions that Imagestate PLC has been through.

Imagestate Media's stock images and specialist image collections are available through and its global network of agents, spanning 70 countries. Among the distributors handling Imagestate Media images are: Getty Images, Jupiter Images, Alamy, Punchstock and Fotosearch. Imagestate Media is based in London, with a sales office in New York.

Copyright © 2007 Jim Pickerell. The above article may not be copied, reproduced, excerpted or distributed in any manner without written permission from the author. All requests should be submitted to Selling Stock at 10319 Westlake Drive, Suite 162, Bethesda, MD 20817, phone 301-461-7627, e-mail: wvz@fpcubgbf.pbz

Jim Pickerell is founder of, an online newsletter that publishes daily. He is also available for personal telephone consultations on pricing and other matters related to stock photography. He occasionally acts as an expert witness on matters related to stock photography. For his current curriculum vitae go to:  


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