UK television sector growth program Indielab Accelerator has unveiled its 2020 cohort of 16 production studios set to receive business training, networking and investment opportunities.
The fifth edition of the program, which was due to start later this month, has been rescheduled to September and October in response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Digital mentoring, however, will be made available to support the British indie sector through the challenges ahead during the outbreak.
The virtual mentoring service will run throughout the summer in parallel with Indielab founder and CEO Victoria Powell (pictured) and her team “working with broadcasters and government agencies to ascertain what support and financial relief is on offer to indies,” according to the company.
“Indielab will host online mentoring sessions throughout the summer. While these may not offer all the benefits of our in-the-room events, we feel it’s a genuinely innovative way for us to deliver safe but effective 1-2-1 accelerator support during this difficult time,” said Powell in a statement. “We have an excellent cohort of indies on this year’s programme and want to do what we can to support them through the challenges ahead.”
As in previous years, those selected for the program represent a balanced mix of scripted and non-scripted companies from the London and regional areas. The selected participants include BEEZR Studios, Bone Soup Productions, FirstLook TV, Forest, ie ie productions, Little Door Productions, Man Alive Entertainment, Merman, Milk and Honey Productions, Parable, Phoenix Television, Red Sky Productions, Saturday’s Child, Spirit Media, Very Nice TV and Yellow Door Productions.
Each participating indie has been invited to nominate two employees that will take part in the program.
The 2020 program is crafted to provide early and mid-stage entertainment prodcos support, with the cohort offered specialist training, networking and investment opportunities from 50-plus industry leaders. If relevant, participating companies are then put forward to pitch to hand-picked, industry-specific investors.
To be eligible, indies must be founded and registered in the UK, with less than £6 million (US$7.3m) in revenue in non-scripted. To support the growing scripted and non-scripted sectors, the cap on turnover has been upped to £8 million (US$9.7m) should the company be capable in demonstrating some scripted production. Participants must also have had at least two broadcast credits within the last three years.
Indielab Accelerator’s 2020 program will focus on international production financing, the challenges faced as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the opportunities and challenges involved in conducting business in the U.S., forging relationships with the SVOD platforms and developing alternative revenue streams.
New this year to Indielab’s roster of partners are Creative Scotland, Getty Images, who joins returning funders C4 and the BBC, and sponsors Banijay Rights, law firm Harbottle & Lewis, accounting and tax consultants Ecovis Wingrave Yeats and Nyman Libson Paul.