MipCom 2007 has seen growth for the event in almost every parameter compared to last year. And India has thrown some impressive numbers. From 12 exhibiting companies last year, this year there were 59 Indian companies at the event, showing a growth of almost 392 per cent, and putting India among the top 10 countries at the event.
Paul Johnson, Director, Television Division, Reed Midem, said, “This is the first time that India has made it to the top 10 countries in terms of exhibiting companies.” Did the growth come on back of the fact that India was the ‘Country of Honour’ this year? Replied Johnson, “It has accelerated the growth, but we have been analysing India for the last two years, and with the way the broadcast companies there have been growing, we expect these numbers to grow even more in the coming years.”
He cited the examples of China and Korea from past experience to substantiate his point. Johnson said that India already had a large pay TV market and was expected to be the largest pay TV market in the coming years. He further said, “India has a rich history like that of some of the big markets today, so there is a combination of the creative support and economical growth, which gives a good position on the global map.”
The other countries in the top 10 order are the UK, France, the US, Spain, Canada, Italy, Germany, South Korea and Japan. The event has also seen a 5 per cent growth in total number of stands to 545 this year; 8 per cent growth in total number of companies to 4,581 this year; 7 per cent growth in participants, and a 10 per cent growth in programme TV buyers.
Speaking on the overall festival, Johnson said, “We are constantly looking at more place to be able to house the exhibiting companies – we moved Disney ABC to the beach this year, so we are looking at constantly looking at solutions for the space problem.”
He took the audience through the various conferences and subjects that MipCom 2007 brought under the scanner, including topics like Green TV and branded entertainment. When pointed out that even as content experts were stating that branded entertainment might be the route for the future, the market really didn’t reflect much of content on these lines, Johnson explained, “We saw this in digital as well a few years back, when one would just look at the Internet and mobile players and wonder what were they doing at the event, and now they have completely integrated with the event. I see the move to branded entertainment also happen in the same way.”
He also divulged Reed Midem’s plans to initiate dialogue between brands, agencies and content creators for each to be able to understand their roles in the content value chain and jointly own products on the lines of ‘branded content’ that came from it. He said, “It has to be a marriage made in heaven for this to work.” He explained, “Even if 1 per cent of advertising revenues came to the programming side, it would be quite a boost to content revenues, given the sheer size of ad revenues.”
Reed Midem is also all set to launch Amazia, which is designed as a B2B Asian entertainment content market. This event is scheduled to take place from November 17-20, 2008, in Hong Kong. He informed that the China’s State Administration of Radio, Film and Television and the Shanghai Media Group had already given their backing to the festival.
Will this eat into MipCom and MipTV traffic from Asia? Johnson said, “If our experience from MipAsia is anything to go by, then this would mean that we would see participation from companies that have never participated before, and this would only mean growth.”
The new countries in the festival this year included Antigua, Belarus, Cuba, Fiji, Liechtenstein, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Puerto Rico, Senegal and Tanzania.