Ministry of illusion (MOI), a postproduction company best known for its visual effects and animation, has entered into a 50% BEE share deal with Sceptre Marketing, it announced last week (28 July 2009).

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Marios Nicolettis, Wanda Shuenyane and Gerd Miller
�Selecting the right BEE partner with a highly reputable track record in industry strategy and general management was high on our priority list,� says Ministry of illusion's MD Gerd M�ller.

Wanda Shuenyane of Sceptre, which made industry headlines in 2005 when it acquired 46% of leading experiential agency, VWV Group, concurs. �We will play an active role at a non-executive level, to ensure the integration of Sceptre's experience and associations to bolster the company and see it succeed.�

Plans include the launch of �Ministry of illusion Academy' to grow black talent in animation. The motivation is two-fold; by providing skills development in the postproduction space, young talent will be offered a rare opportunity to be trained, nurtured, and snapped up by industry leaders. Secondly, by committing to grow talent, the academy affirms Ministry of illusion's belief in the ever-growing potential of the industry. The transaction also includes immediate access to government and international markets that the companies have established.

MOI is the name behind many well-known TV adverts - Cell C's Little People, Audi's Shar-Pei, Vodacom's Meerkat and various Coca Cola ads. It was also commissioned by FIFA to produce the graphics for the Preliminary Draw. The visual showcase included animated icons for SA host cities, a soccer player figure performing 10 different actions, and a 3D gold soccer ball unfolding to reveal the continent within. The company was then commissioned to handle the Confederation Cup�s draw and is currently involved in the upcoming FIFA 2010 pitch being presented in Zurich. MOI has been officially nominated to create graphics for the FIFA final draw later this year.

Gerd M�ller and Marios Nicolletis, both primary principals who founded the business nine years ago, will remain at the helm of the Ministry of illusion business. The company will remain owner operated, and management and staff positions will be unaffected.