MIPTV Wrap up: certainties to build a new market

MIPTV 2019 was one of the hottest Cannes events in recent times. Not because of business, which continued flushing with the digital era.

It was because for the first time, the decrease of exhibitors and attendance made a big difference, pushing organizer Reed Midem to consult customers how to improve the venue. Day by day, fresh news about the possible 2020 format were heard, and people were very pending.

Conclusions? MIPTV will continue in Cannes but following many of the exhibitors requests: reduced costs, one day less, independence from Mipcom to negotiate spaces, booths as together as possible inside The Palais (most of them at the floor) to concentrate buyer traffic. The idea is to offer 3-4 options of standardized booths for the companies to choose, not to generate competitions and with the design included. And to promote concepts as ‘InDevelopment’, to make people join in the early stages of the projects.

On Thursday, The Palais was emptier than ever, so evidently the event must have one day less. A top executive of Reed Midem commented to Prensario: ‘Everything is still under discussion, but we are planning to develop MIPDoc and MIPFormats on Sunday and Monday, instead of since Saturday, and to spread MIPTV from Tuesday to Thursday, three days. The problem is that everyone has a different opinion, but we are working to fit the best mixture’.

‘If we reduce some infrastructure issues, as security, insurances, people, avoiding one day and the booths outside The Palais, the cost difference is very important. It doesn’t affect business but we can offer exhibitors better budgets. We are not worried about buyer attendance. MipCancun and MIPChina are growing progressively, the first one from finished products to co-productions and the second on the opposite, but there are not so global markets as the Mips in Cannes’.

According to own Prensario figures, there were about 7,000 people in Cannes, 20 percent less from last year. At Mipcom 2018 there were about 13,000 people, so attendees figured a big difference. As we said yesterday, the exhibitors we interviewed said the market was bad, but their business was good. The big majority of the active buyers were in Cannes, many companies with less people but good decision makers.

So, it is fully true that MIPTV needs big changes, but it is surprising the ‘obsession’ that many industry members have to ‘destroy’ the market. Natpe Miami and ATF Asia for instance, in their best editions handle 5,000 attenders. For Prensario, it is a question about costs above all, to get MIPTV up again.

Something new about the mergers and the new OTT era? If Disney-Fox and Warner are planning to avoid traditional distribution structures to approach directly the audience with their own platforms, during MIPTV it was heard that Lionsgate could do the same, using Starz OTT platform. The system is not available in some regions, but it can start in the main markets, quite at the same time of the big titans.

Spain is on focus for digital platforms and big international players to produce local and original. We’ve mentioned during the week Netflix, Mediapro, Viacom, opening offices and studios, now we can add French Gaumont and Federation Entertainment (led by Tony Sevilla, former RTVE content director) and Beta Film (Germany).

Traditional broadcasters? Claudia Ruehl, senior manager, content acquisitions, ProsiebenSat Media, Germany: ‘Time ago we bought just for free TV, traditional programming as procedural series, etc. Today we buy for free TV, pay TV and OTT, with segmented products per channel. Especially, we are looking content for people that leave free TV. New ways of shooting, genre twists, younger audiences. The TV + digital environment in Germany is difficult because we can measure live + 3, but not live + 7 or live + 30, as in the U.S. market. Everything is a big challenge’.

Nicolás Smirnoff, Fabricio Ferrara and Rodrigo Cantisano

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