From May 30-June 1, Moscow’s World Content Market will mark its 10th edition. (VideoAge will focus its Day 3 Daily at MIP-TV on territories that are seldom present at Western TV markets, but flock to WCM, including Armenia, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.)
All 15 countries of the former Soviet Union are expected to attend WCM, spanning from Eastern Europe to the Baltic States, from the Southern Caucasus to Central Asia. And, of course, “mother Russia” with its 21 terrestrial TV channels, 300 pay-TV and 60 VoD services, will be represented.
VideoAge caught up with the market’s founder and organizer, Moscow-based Elena Sunbeam, to find out what’s in store for this year’s event and to learn a little bit more about the Eastern European content market.
VAI: What’s new this year?
ES: The Latin American showcase, where sales companies will offer series and formats produced in Mexico, Colombia, Brazil, and Cuba, will be in a highlight this year. Panel “Key TV Channels in Russia and CIS: New Projects and Challenges” will be focused on face-to-face briefings with representatives of key TV Channels in this region. Another important panel, called “Online Video Platforms: New technologies. Expectations and Realities,”, will be a good opportunity to meet executives from online video platforms, one of the fastest-growing sectors that offers new innovative solutions for content monetizing.
VAI: What kind of programs are the former Russia territories looking for?
ES: All genres are welcome. Despite participation of former Russia territories (like Belarus, Kazakhstan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, etc…), we recommend [companies] do deals with TV channels from Russia, [which] will bring the biggest revenue. As to Russian regional TV channels and former Russian territories, the right strategy will be to find a good local partner in Moscow. This partner will take care of content adaptation and will help to sell it to entire region.
VAI: What are the license fee ranges sellers can expect?
ES: It depends on the TV channel. It also depends on genre. As an example, in Russia, deals for drama series can range from 2,500 to 25,000 USD per hour, for formats, from 3,000 to 10,000 USD, for TV movies from 5,000 to 35,000 USD.
VAI: What are the rights those buyers demand most often? (free-TV, SVoD, Streaming, Pay-TV….)
ES: The market is focused on television and new media platforms. Sales companies can offer rights for free-TV, pay-TV, VoD, Mobile, OTT/IPTV, etc.
VAI: What kind of investment will a distributor have to make to exhibit at the WCM and what kind of return they can expect?
ES: The cost of a minimum exhibiting package in Moscow is much cheaper than the cost of a simple visitor badge at the [Cannes markets]. At the same time, exhibiting in Moscow will give a unique opportunity to close deals with key Russian TV channels, including Channel One Worldwide, TV Channel Russia, CTC Channel and other well-known broadcasters in this region. Moscow is a city where 90 percent of the business [that’s] happening in this region [is taking place]. Once you come to Moscow, you will meet face-to-face with almost all serious players in this business.