London-based TV accelerator program Indielab has returned for its sophomore year to provide young production outfits with a boost to their operations.
Launched last year by former Be Good Films co-founder Victoria Powell (pictured), the annual program seeks to promote a sustainable independent television sector in the UK by equipping fledgling companies with the skills, networks and investment needed to scale their businesses.
The 2017 program will provide 15 small indies and start-ups across all genres with the insight, business training, networking and investment needed to scale their businesses. Eligible companies must be founded and registered in the UK with up to £5 million (US$6.23 million) in turnover, at least two broadcast credits within the last three years and be 80% independently owned.
Selected UK-based indies will receive high-level industry training through a series of masterclasses, lectures, one-on-one sessions and workshops across four months geared toward providing training on business planning, distribution, how to maximize revenue streams, corporate finance and investor readiness.
The program will culminate in an investor pitching event set to offer the indies and start-ups – working across all genres – the opportunity to pitch for a private equity investment, VC funds and other financiers.
Industry leaders attached to this year’s program, which is now open to the nations and regions across the UK, include Dimitri Doganis, founder of Raw TV; Gary Rike, MD of Brown Eyed Boy; and Emma Wakefield, MD of Lambent Productions.
Successful applicants will also receive corporate advice throughout the program from Zodiak Rights, Barclays, Sony Pictures Television, ZDF Enterprises, Harbottle & Lewis and Channel 4.
Entries for the 2017 Indielab program will be open from Dec. 1 until Feb. 7, 2017 with successful applicants unveiled later that month. The companies will then be asked to nominate two people to take part in the program from March to May.
The 2016 inaugural cohort class is expected to see a total of £4.9 million (US$6.1 million) added to their revenue across the next 18 months, an average £350,000 per company, according to Indielab. As well, 80% of those companies also are expected to enter into either a first-look or distribution deal within the next six months. Additionally, all 16 indies from 2016 are expected to create new jobs in their businesses over the next year.
“The success of Indielab’s inaugural program has demonstrated the huge appetite there is for growth among the UK’s budding TV production companies,” said Justine Simons, Deputy Mayor for culture and creative industries, in a statement. “One in six jobs is generated through London’s creative economies, which is worth £70 billion to the UK, so it is incredibly important that independent companies get support like this to develop their skillsets and networks, enabling them to flourish and add to our city’s status as a world-leader for business and creativity.”