480 STOCK CONNECTION AND PICTOR AGREE
May 18, 2002
SC To Take Over U.S. Marketing Of File
Stock Connection and Pictor have agreed to terms that would transfer the image files currently
under control of Pictor INC., a wholly owned subsidiary of Pictor Ltd., to Stock Connection
for future management and marketing in North America.
Pictor has been in Chapter 11 bankruptcy since May of 2001. This agreement provides a way for
the creditors to receive a portion of what they are owed, and for photographers to be
guaranteed that they will be paid promptly for any work licensed for use in North America in
Due to the lack of marketing there has been a dramatic falloff in sales of the images in the
Pictor file in the last couple years -- and particularly since the bankruptcy was filed. Stock
Connection believes that with proper marketing and attention to customer service the value of
the file can be revitalized.
Cheryl Pickerell DiFrank, President of Stock Connection, says, "The Pictor file contains some
great images of subjects that are in high demand. We believe they can generate significant
income if marketed effectively. In the past Pictor focused on print catalog marketing and the
cost of this marketing strategy led to some of the problems Pictor has encountered. From its
founding in 1993 Stock Connection has focused on using digital technology to market images. We
believe that by making more images available online and effectively promoting the site we can
greatly improve sales."
[Jim Pickerell, editor of Selling Stock, is a minority owner of Stock Connection.]
The agreement must still be approved by the creditors and the bankruptcy court before it can
take effect and the file can actually be transferred to Stock Connection's control. It is
expected that process will be completed within a couple of months.
Some of the photographers Pictor represents are contracted to Pictor LTD and others are
contracted to Pictor INC., the U.S. subsidiary. In a complex deal Stock Connection will
control all the marketing in North America of images supplied by the INC photographers and
will have some marketing rights to images supplied by the LTD photographers.
Pictor LTD will continue to market many of the images belonging to European photographers
through PictureQuest on a non-exclusive basis. Pictor LTD also retains the right to market new
print catalogs through other agencies in the United States and to market both the INC and LTD
images outside of North America for the life of the existing contracts. This new agreement in
no way affects Pictor's existing agreements with their sub-agencies.
Initially, the images that are digitized will be marketed through Stock Connection's own site,
www.scphotos.com, and www.picturequest.com. Stock Connection intends to supply images to other
portals in the near future.
In February we reported in Story 462
that PictureQuest had made an offer to take over the
operation of the Pictor file in the U.S. That offer was later withdrawn. The Stock Connection
offer is the only one currently on the table.