Insights & rules to media financing highpoints at ATF/AFM

SINGAPORE: There's nothing that attracts money more than money itself. As in any sphere, finance is of utmost importance in media too. In order to be a successful saleable product, the production plan for emotional, creative content has to be as rational and pragmatic as with any other product in order to attract financing.

Sponsored by Singapore's Media Development Authority and Investment New Zealand and organised by Reed Exhibitions as part of the ATF/AFM event, the Media Financing Forum held on 29 November at the Shangri-La at Orchard Road Singapore was attended by over 200 delegates comprising a fair sprinkle of financiers.

The panelists shared some insights into attracting the attention of media financiers and gave some thumb rules for producers seeking finance. The conference had two panel discussions:

The topic "Mystery" of Media Financing - Find the Money was moderated by Transpac Media Limited, USA, COO Patrick Murray.The panelists included Transpac Media Limited, USA Chairman Andrew Craissati, Imperial Capital Bank - Entertainment Finance (ICBEF), USA vice president - Portfolio Management Adrian Ward, Mega Media, Singapore managing director Jonathan Foo, RGM Holdings, UK Head of Film Financing Rodney Payne, Park Road Post, New Zealand director Michael Stephens.

The subject "Pitch" - What You Need to Know was also moderated by Patrick Murray and the panelists included Parallax Capital Management (Singapore) director Douglas Abrams, Bigfoot Entertainment (USA) CEO Kacy Andrews, Focus Films (Hong Kong) vice president, Film Productions & Acquisitions Elliot Tong and Ingenious Media PLC, UK director Judith Chan.


One point hammered was the importance of having a business plan and the necessity of 'skin in the game'. "Financiers like to see how much of 'own skin' has the producer put into the project" remarked ICB's Adrian Ward. "When a producer highlights how profitable investing in his project can be, we expect him to put in some of his own too," he added.

Other important criteria included association of known salable big names. "A big name or a reputed experienced professional attached to a project will definitely get us interested," stated Ingenious Media's Judith Chan.

Equally important was pre-sales and the reputation of the sales agent. "We don't expect the producer who has the entire production and creation responsibilities to focus on the sales. What we look for is strong sales partners and agents across regions so as to exploit the territories and bring in returns" remarked RGM's Rodney Payne.

Local hero Jonathan Foo, MD of Singapore based Mega Media shared some wonderful insights. Mega Media recently made a big splash with its $20 million tie up with Cablevision's Rainbow Media. Mega Media's hi-def factual programming will now be aired to 11 million homes in the US.

"There are a lot more people looking for money, then those that are offering it," remarked Foo. "In such a scenario, one has to differentiate oneself and try and attract the finance. And while pitching it is important to remember that things like quality cant be a selling point as that is an expected feature in any case. You need to put some money where your mouth is and have a global plan, especially for producers coming from places like Singapore where there is not a substantial enough local market."

Amongst the most common glitches that the financiers observed was the lack of a proper and rational business plan in most cases.

The panelists also enlightened the audience on the various kinds of finance available. Institutional funding involved a model where an entity such as bank lent money. The fees are generally upfront for such funding and there is no share in the backend.

Equity or co productions are an emerging trend now and involve investment of finance and resource by multiple partners and are a great way of spreading the risk and increasing the potential market size.

The panelists had a word of caution for those seeking soft money and grants as well as for producers who got in with high net worth individual 'Emotional' investors as these sometimes would end up in the producer having to sacrifice creative integrity.

The last line of advice as the day ended was - "Get your skin in and play the game. Make a business plan, try and hitch in big names and get the best sales agents. Completion bonds and a good lawyer add to the whole package."

Latest Reads
Multi-media ad campaign to popularise gold coin

A year after it was first launched, a multimedia advertising campaign is being launched to drive awareness around Diwali on the availability of the Indian gold coin by the Mines and Minerals Trading Corporation along with World Gold Council. Being launched this week, the campaign will cover...

MAM Media and Advertising Ad Campaigns
Vizeum launches Binary, special advisory unit for media clients

“Media business is, in the short term, headed for a tipping point, driven by the changing consumer-media interface,” emphasises Vizeum India MD Shripad Kulkarni, who strongly believes that media companies need a definitive transformation strategy in place now.

MAM Media and Advertising Media Agencies
Havas Media bags Rs 15-cr Sujata account

MUMBAI: Havas Media Group India has bagged the integrated media duties of Sujata, an Indian Consumer Electronics & Home Appliances brand for Juicer Mixer Grinders. The incumbent on the business was Exposure Media. The account will be handled out of Gurgaon office led by Uday Mohan. The...

MAM Media and Advertising Account
TV festive ad spend to reach Rs 8000 cr; experts divided

MUMBAI: The festive months of October and November are welcome months not just for you and your family, but for most Indian brands as well. After all, they eagerly wait for this early window when consumers loosen up their purse strings and put their Diwali bonuses to good use, aka, shopping.

MAM Marketing MAM
Amagi partners with BARC India to offer monitoring of geo-targeted TV ad-campaigns

Amagi Media Labs has entered into a partnership agreement with India’s apex television viewership monitoring body BARC India to help advertisers monitor geo-targeted ad-campaigns of brands across TV channels.

MAM Media and Advertising AD Agencies
iProspect conceptualises unique digital video for ICICI two-wheeler insurance

iProspect India has conceptualized and executed a unique digital video for ICICI Lombard General Insurance in their latest campaign on two-wheeler insurance.

MAM Media and Advertising AD Agencies
eBay engages consumer with live game on FB

MUMBAI: Festive season is a busy time for Indian brands, especially the e-commerce players given the shopping spree the nation witnessed around the time. Thus it becomes important to brainstorm on new and unique ways to get the consumer’s attention; something different from the unbelievable...

MAM Media and Advertising Ad Campaigns
Culture Machine & Quaker Oats aim to feed kids

As the festive mood gathers spirit in the country, Culture Machine’s digital channel Being Indian, in collaboration with Quaker Oats, have released a new campaign. Titled "Ek Muthi Sonu ke Naam", the video urges people to pause and spare a thought to the millions of children who go hungry.

MAM Media and Advertising Ad Campaigns
BTVi unveils new brand positioning

BTVi has unveiled its new positioning, #OpinionsThatCount, aimed at impacting the opinions of the influencers. With this, BTVi will be the voice and choice of the influential. An integrated campaign will be launched primarily catering to influencers, key decision makers and opinion makers.

MAM Media and Advertising People

Latest News

Load More

Sign up for our Newsletter

subscribe for latest stories