With NATPE 2013 just finished, we thought we’d give you a quick overview of this year’s market (a longer review will be in our March issue).

Overall, both the weather and the mood at NATPE were good. In fact, even on the last day of the market things remained busy.

Thanks in some part to the fact that it was NATPE’s 50th anniversary, there was plenty of partying going on. Opening night alone had eight parties. Content’s cocktail party got some star power with Larry King, who was there to promote his new talk show Larry King Now, which will be distributed internationally.

Arsenio Hall was on hand at the CBS Cabana and at their cocktail party to market his new late-night talk show.

While the floor and suites were busy on Monday (the first day of the market), we can only think that Telemundo had something to do with the quietness of the floor on Tuesday morning. Their opening night party at Bamboo Miami started at 10 p.m. Monday night and went well into the morning.

Tuesday night marked the Tartikoff Awards and NATPE’s 50th birthday bash. But it wasn’t all fun and games… real business was being done, too. This year NATPE saw a larger domestic U.S. contingent than usual, and all of the studios were in attendance. Some 5,000 participants were in attendance from 60 countries (a number we believe, since that was the number of VideoAge Dailies that were printed based on the hotel-room distribution count, and very few were left over).

And here’s some syndication news: Twentieth Television announced that this summer it’ll test out a first-run talk show — called Kris — hosted by Kardashian mother Kris Jenner. CBS Television Distribution announced that its new conflict-resolution talk show The Test has been sold in 80 percent of the country. CBS also said that Dr. Phil has been renewed through the 2016-2017 season in 77 percent of the country. In off-net news, the company announced that Hot in Cleveland has been sold to TV stations in 92 percent of the U.S for a September 2014 launch.

Now to the logistics. The elevator problem at the Tresor tower was alleviated a bit, but lines formed during much of the day. To soften the blow, organizers offered sparkling wine (promoted as “Champagne”) and sparkling water at certain times during the day.

Once again the larger companies chose to set up shop in the hotel suites, leaving the exhibition area to smaller companies. The layout of the booths, unfortunately, minimized traffic and left those located on the sides and the ends feeling a bit out of the way. A better way to do it, we think, would have been to have the booths in circles, or set up horizontally rather than vertically.

One well-received addition to the NATPE floor was a happy hour, where complimentary wine and beer were offered each evening (on the last day, sparkling wine was offered too). That (perhaps unsurprisingly) helped boost floor traffic.

While some rumors were flying that NATPE would go back to Las Vegas or even New Orleans in 2014, organizers confirmed that the market will be held at the Fontainebleau in Miami Beach again next year, and hopefully again in 2015.

We caught up with Michael Solomon of Truli Media Group, who was at NATPE for the first time in four years looking for product for the Truli.net platform, which aggregates content that’s distributed on tablets, smart phones and smart TVs among other devices. He was looking for family programming across many languages.

At the closing press conference, Jordan Levin, president of Alloy Digital and chairman of NATPE, said the new NATPE is where the deal starts (e.g. the place where new ideas are sparked). New CEO Rod Perth said, “We’re rolling… not perfect, but rolling.”

Of the 50th anniversary celebrations, Michael Solomon said before the event; “It just brings a lot of nostalgia to me. I’m sure I’ll see people that I haven’t seen in years. I pioneered the Latin American area for America Television. I put most of the TV stations on the air with Latin product in the mid-60s when I was head of Latin America for MCA,” he said.

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