We’re all preparing for a whirlwind fall, with five film/TV markets set to take place over a nine-week period, meaning there will be one event every 12 days or so. It all starts with the Rome, Italy-based MIA Market (October 9-13), followed three days later by MIPCOM in Cannes, France (October 16-19). After that some of the industry’s caravan will be flying to Santa Monica, California, on the shores of the Pacific Ocean, for the AFM (October 31-November 5), and nine days later it’ll head to the beaches of the Atlantic Ocean for MIP Cancun (November 14-17). Finally, 20 days later, some of these same executives will reconvene between the Indian Ocean and the South China Sea for Singapore’s ATF (December 6-8).
The whole circus-like caravan will involve some 8,000 people, with the highest number reached by the “mother” of all markets: MIPCOM. After that, in descending order, we have estimated (based on last year’s figures) to have ATF with 3,000 people, MIA with about 2,250 participants, MIP Cancun with 1,000. The AFM objected to the figure previously published in VideoAge Water Cooler feature on November 7, 2022, which indicated 900 people. Organizers assert that the actual figure was 5,866 attendees. The overlaps could, at the most, involve an estimated 10 percent of the attendees, as well as 20 percent of the exhibiting companies. Many of the same people and the same companies will participate at most of the events — although probably not all.
The industry is expected to invest an estimated $50 million for the five aforementioned markets, with the hope that those markets will spearhead business in the order of $1 billion.
Setting the tone for all the fall markets is, of course, MIPCOM, and there are many reasons for this. First, sales executives can follow up on conversations initiated in Cannes, or to reach clients who did not attend MIPCOM (like, for example, many LATAM buyers). Second, people can initiate sales that simply couldn’t happen at MIPCOM or even decide to reduce future market attendance due to MIPCOM overspend or underperformance.
It is expected that this upcoming MIPCOM will come close to pre-pandemic years in terms of participation, engagement, and results. As for the quality and quantity of attendees, that can generally be gauged by the topics of its conferences and seminars, which can determine the level of engagement. Bland topics typically translate into a lack of interest on the part of attendees, and recurrent issues covered again means reduced resources. Even though the success of MIPCOM is mostly due to its good market-timed calendar dates, and not for its conferences, MIPCOM was fortunate to have secured the participation of Gerhard Zeiler, president, International Warner Bros. Discovery, as one of its keynote speakers. The TV executive has experience in content acquisition and sales in both Europe and the U.S.
An example that links markets’ conference topics with their success could be found in the apparent disinterest that MIPTV organizers had in leveraging the power of the developing new season that unfolds right around April’s MIPTV dates — although this decision was possibly made due to a lack of appeal from top-level TV executives. Either way, as a result, the market wasn’t all that successful. Conversely, the conferences at MIP Cancun were interesting (if poorly attended), and the event was a success. At the Asia TV Forum, on the other hand, the conferences were mostly domestically focused, and indeed the market took on a localized tone.
In terms of business expectations, in early August, this 39th annual MIPCOM already boasted 350 exhibitors, as well as 16 countries with national pavilions.
In VideoAge’s MIPCOM preview story, scheduled for the October 2023 Issue, the publication’s contributors in New York and Los Angeles will report on a survey of 20 content distribution companies from 10 countries regarding the following topics:
Do you expect this year’s MIPCOM to return to the success of its pre-pandemic years?
Do you think that the Hollywood strikes will ultimately benefit indies’ sales?
Are you satisfied or disappointed about the topics presented at this year’s MIPCOM conferences? What would you rather them cover?
What is the main issue that concerns you right now with regard to MIPCOM?
Will MIPCOM’s results determine your involvement/presence at other fall markets?
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