After two days of sessions, pitches and networking, the Bengaluru B2B AVGC Summit called the curtains on this year’s edition with a promise to return bigger and better.
The second day of the event at ITC Windsor Manor showed the same intensity from the buyers and sellers, just like day one. With consistent number of pitches from indigenous participants throughout the day, the buyers seem to be content as well. So much so, that Jetpack Distribution’s Dominic Gardiner, during his session titled New Paradigms of Distribution announced that he plans to take with him at least two shows from India this time. During his session, Gardiner spoke about the distribution process with the five steps- publicity, pitch, contract, deliver and collect. According to him, to find a good distributor, you must look into a number of factors including, their catalogue compatibility with your offerings, asking for projections, terms of business and most importantly, looking for a good track record from the potential distributor. Concluding his sessions on the thoughts of what has changed and what has not in the field of distribution, he explained that even though the technology has changed giving entry to new buyers, screens and marketing tactics, what haven’t changed are the basics, like face to face business, B2B markets and legal contracts, to name a few.
Talking about the event, Turner’s Zia Bales said this was her first time in India and she felt extremely welcomed and enjoyed the pitches, while League of Geeks’ Blake Mizzi said he would definitely like to hear more stories from the Indian creators. Technicolor’s Alison Warner, during her session, delved into a case study of the show, The Deep, which aired in 130 territories over various networks. She explained how they built a 360 degree brand around it and even though the show was aimed at kids, the parents loved it too, fetching the show an informal title of a family program. From video games to themed sections at water parks and toys, they have tried to maximise the brand presence for visibility. An interesting talk by Mighty Serious’ Al Gibb started with his appreciation for the hosting country and the organisers. Going into the topic, the Australia-based developer explained the kind of games they make and what can be done further. He stressed on the point that no matter which government comes into power, they should always support the industry going further. Talking about their upcoming project to combat homophobia, in association with the state of Victoria, Australia, the CEO explained how they are working with behavioural researchers and universities to create a program, rather a game, to help people make better decisions on the topic. Speaking to some of the sellers during lunch gave us the idea that even though not all their pitches were successful, they got valuable feedback and learnt a lot from the buyers, who were experienced in their respective fields. A session moderated by Biren Ghose brought together some of the foreign delegates in an attempt to provide attendees with tips and tricks to pitch better. Suggestions included checking the shows that a broadcaster airs to get an idea if your offering fits in the scene and being relaxed and making a conversation, not just a robotic pitch. While the delegates engaged in some fun demo pitching sessions, all the attendees including the buyers and the sellers converged in the hall for the final leg of the show. All the buyers were called upon the stage to share their feedback on the event, to which one statement resonated from everyone: “The event was very well organised.” Thanking ABAI for their initiatives, the buyers praised the content that they had seen in the past two days and seemed enthusiastic to return again.
With that, Biren Ghose took to lead to share the road for ABAI, going forward. He said, going forward in 2017, they would be looking forward to local and international engagement and would further attempt to take digital into the more rural areas. The ABAI president also announced that the ministry has given a greenlight for the continuation for the B2B event, so you can expect another edition, officially.
Also mentioning that they have had feedbacks about the market not being for production houses and studios, they promised to segregate the market and bring about opportunities for the aforementioned parties as well. Going by Ghose’s words Bengaluru GAFX will likely see mentoring sessions for pitches as well. With the buyers and sellers thanking each other, it was time for curtain call. The MoU was signed between ABAI and Game Developers’ Association of Australia (GDAA) to promote India-Australia gaming corridor and was received with much applause. Thus, the two day event had come to a fruitful end, showing prospect of a better next edition.
Sharing parting thoughts, the summit’s director Srinivas Bindiganavale expressed, “The response to this pioneering event was phenomenal. We would like to express our appreciation for the whole-hearted participation from both the buyers and sellers in this Summit.”
Speaking about the two-day event and future plans, he further added, “The Summit was an overwhelming success with over 450 sessions, 120 plus sellers and 20 plus distinguished buyers from all over the world providing great knowledge, feedback and encouragement; and the social interactions with our community of creators and producers was as valuable. We look forward to creating more such platforms often to fuel growth to the original content IP creators of our country.”
Replete with enthusiasm, the Regency halls of ITC Windsor Manor in Bengaluru played host to India’s very first B2B Summit, curated specifically for the AVGC sector. Organised by ABAI in association with the Govt. of Karnataka, the event attracted around 21 buyers from around the globe and with over 100 indigenous pitches, the summit brought together professionals from all corners of the AVGC industry into play. A crisp schedule of one on one pitches with buyers gave away time for the buyers to take on the mantle of speakers as well, wherein they took to the stage to share their experiences and provide insights on what people should keep in mind while trying to sell or pitch their products. As Australia based Mighty Serious CEO Al Gibb said, “We are not only here to buy, we’re here to share our experiences with everyone, which in turn would be beneficial!”
Animation World Network’s Dan Sarto spoke about how the roots have to be strengthened in order to create better talent and hence better products. Focusing on the education in the AVGC sector and how it should be provided utmost care, he also praised the B2B Summit and how trusted networks like this will help foster a better ecosystem. Antony Reed from the Game Developers Association of Australia spoke about the gaming industry in Australia and how the active support from the government and the passionate developers helped rebuild its gaming scene from a mere 300 individuals to a strong 2000 in a brief amount of time. Further focusing on creating IPs, he said that Australia contributes to very less in the gaming consumer base but is still strong on creating original content, barely opting for outsourced work.
In between the sessions we caught up with some of the sellers and buyers to get their initial feedback. With each seller getting 15 minutes on the clock to pitch their product to potential buyers, the schedule was packed but organised in a way to give everyone the opportunity. The same resonated with the words of Disney India director DCVI and animation development Ravindran Acharya, “The event is a positive move for India and Indian studios. They are getting an international exposure and also it is a win-win for both the buyers and the sellers. The event is very well organised and will be favourable for the future of the AVGC industry in the country”
It was not only the buyers who seemed content, among the sellers, Aum Animation CEO Vivek Bolar expressed, “Attention to details and open mindedness to extend the opportunity to not only Karnataka but all around India was really good. We are very impressed.” BBC’s Aubrey Clarke spoke about the recent trend of digital consumptions and that even being a traditional broadcaster, how they came about with IPlayer and are even looking at digital first content. Just B’s Justine Bannister shared her views on how technology enhancements are driving the trends in the industry. She says, “As the OTT market booms, it is also becoming more and more saturated, which however might be good for content creators as they have more options to look for when selling their products.” The Who’s Who panel consisting of Zia Bales, Dominic Gardiner and Tim Searle, which was being curated by Alison Warner touched upon a broad array of subjects concerning the kids’ content sector. From 360 degree approaches to co-productions and technical necessities to storytelling, the panel covered it all. The takeaway from the discussion was that this is the best time to create or get into the kids’ content market, however Bales pointed out that IPs are to be culturally specific but still has to be created in a way that it has an international appeal.
Vince Baertsoen from The Mill showcased their creation titled Blackbird. Created in association with Epic Games, the product will assist users in editing and putting FX in realtime, cutting off the cost and time of post production processes significantly. With the day almost coming to an end, the attendees were paid a visit by the IT BT and Tourism minister of Karnataka Priyank Kharge. With ABAI president Biren Ghosh completing the welcome note, the minister himself took the stage to address the packed hall of audience consisting of buyers, sellers and enthusiasts alike. The minister shared that how a casual conversation during the latest edition of GAFX about making Bangalore the creative capital of the city became what we were experiencing. He appreciated the efforts of ABAI to follow up on that idea and making the Bengaluru B2B AVGC Summit a reality. He further focused on how it’s not only disruption in the ecosystem that has to be materialised, creation is equally important. He exulted, “I would love to see more such events throughout the country and Bengaluru can be the anchor to it.” The minister also announced that day after tomorrow, Rs. 22 crore ( would be invested among 111 start ups who showed promise in the government’s Elevate 100 start-up project. It is to be noted that the government had, during GAFX, announced Rs. 50 lakh to a number of studios who create original IPs. Standing by his words, the minister further encouraged indigenous creators to make original content and expressed that he would love to see original content go global. With ABAI bringing in several requests in a wish list, urging the minister to further look into various areas including infrastructure, policy and more, the minister was almost instantaneous and gave a positive nod to all of them which included the much anticipated Center of Excellence for the AVGC sector in the city. Sharing his thoughts about the event’s turn-up, Bengaluru B2B AVGC Summit Curator Biren Ghose said, “Exceeeding expectations, the B2B AVGC Summit was off to a rollicking start. The global panel of 21 buyers fed off the enthusiasm of about 100 pitchers. The Hon. Minister Priyank Kharge made a sparkling presentation on the initiatives that would spur Bengaluru to become the next creative capital of digital India. He responded to ABAI’s wish list instantaneously and assured the packed hall of greater support for the sector going forward.”
The suspense has ended today with the announcement of the names of the short listed companies which have got through for the animation and gaming pitch organised under the aegis of ABAI’s Bengaluru B2B AVGC summit 2017. The association has got the full support of the Karnataka government for the summit.
International broadcasters, investors, production studios and OTT platforms like Disney, Hotstar, Amazon,CBBC,Turner and many more are participating in the summit which is to be held on 16 and 17 November 2017 at ITC Windsor Manor hotel, Bangalore.
The pitch deadline was initially 6 November, 2017. It was later extended to 8 November due to high public demand. Out of the plethora of entries which poured in from across the nation, 105 pitches have been shortlisted from 66 animation and gaming studios.
The announced list of finalists for the pitch is available on the following link:
The ABAI organising team issued thanks to everyone who submitted their pitches through a press note. It also congratulated all the finalists and encouraged them to get ready to realise their dreams.
A consolidated list of 15 buyers across the world has been already announced and there will be more announcements tomorrow as well. It includes names like Zia Bales from Turner Broadcasting,Avrill Stark from A Stark Production,Aaron Davidson from Amazon Studios to name a few.
In the next phase, the matchmaking session between the pitchers and buyers will be done by ABAI and the slots will be announced on or before 14 November 2017.
The event is being done at breakneck speed with the support of Government of Karnataka in partnership with ABAI. It is happening on 16 and 17 November 2017 at ITC Windsor Manor, Bengaluru.The timeframe is extremely tight and few days are left for the entry deadline. But a good news is that due to heavy public demand, the request for pitches and participation has been extended to 12 pm, 8 November.
ABAI joint secretary and director B2B summitB. S. Srinivas said, “It has become very important to build a unique ‘AVGC business platform’ in our country today designed to connect IP owners, developers; content creators and production houses interested in producing and co-producing creative content which has given rise to this initiative by the Govt. of Karnataka and ABAI.”
He added, “The focus is to make this event – over time- a ‘must visit market place’ in the world like Annecy and MIP in France, ATF in Singapore, CMC in UK or Kidscreen in US. Our success will be to see that “deals are struck” on the spot or through follow-ups where local IP creation matches the needs of global and other buyers.”
The B2B summit is a mini-market place where world’s leading broadcasters, producers, studios like Amazon, BBC, Turner/Cartoon Network, Disney etc will listen to pitches from original IP owners, developers, content creators and production houses! An event of this nature, size and scale has never been done before!
To participate in “Bengaluru B2B AVGC Summit 2017”, the participant shall be above 18 years of age and a citizen of India.
Participant may apply with the aim of presenting any story/concept/idea/script, which can be used to create content of any form; fiction or non-fiction on the medium of film, TV, animation or any digital platform.
The participant shall submit a short synopsis of his/her original pitch and it should not be longer than 2 pages or 5 minutes, if it is AV, in English, along with the entry form.
The deadline to submit the pitch is on or before 8November 2017, 12 PM.
Pitch must be submitted only in ‘.doc’, ‘.docx’ or ‘.pdf’ or ‘.ppt’ files. OR .MP4 or .MOV if an AV. Any AV should be played with headphones as it would disturb the other pitchers and buyers.
There is no participation fee or entry fee for the summit.
From the total entries received, ABAI will shortlist the pitches as per its selection criteria and his/her names will be announced on 9 November 2017. The decision of ABAI will be final and binding in this regard and no communication in this regard shall be entertained.
For each selected pitch, upto three representatives (pitchers) are allowed. (Ideally 1-2 persons is the format)
Participants to present their ideas directly to the respective producers/commissioners/ studios/networks/publisher at “Bengaluru B2B AVGC Summit”. Presentation aids, if any required shall be arranged by the pitchers/participant.
By participating in “Bengaluru B2B AVGC Summit” participants of including idea owners/content owners as well as the producers/co-producers/commissioners/ studios/networks/publishers agree to indemnify ABAI, its partners, employees, officers and agents from any IPR related issues/claims.
It is strongly recommended that idea/concept/story/screenplay owners ensure that their content is registered with relevant authorities.
The participants are expected to maintain decorum during their interaction with the organisers and the panelists. The organisers hold the rights to disqualify and restrict participation of any candidate due to misconduct. Decision of the organisers would be final and binding.
ABAI joint secretary and director B2B summitB. S. Srinivas answered some of the frequently asked questions about the summit as follows:
Who are the kind of buyers who are coming? What do they want to see?
Srinivas: Broadcasters, producers, distributors, investors will be coming. They want to see good IPs with a global essence.
What is the minimum preparation one should have to pitch his/her idea?
Srinivas: The idea should be presented in an innovative format with all details,
How do I apply to be a pitcher? What if I have more than one pitch?
Srinivas: You can apply online on www.abaib2bsummit.com. You can apply as separate applications for more than one pitch.
How will my application be evaluated?
Srinivas: It will be evaulated based on the concept and relevance to the buyers present.
What do I have to do after being selected?
Srinivas: After being selected, you have to prepare a proper pitch deck with a teaser or trailer if possible and look forward to the matchmaking done by ABAI.
Whom do I address my queries to, if I have any requirements for my pitch?
Srinivas: You can write to firstname.lastname@example.org. Your queries would be addressed.
By when will I get to know if my pitch has been shortlisted? When will I receive the dates/schedule for my pitch?
Srinivas: The shortlisted pitches will be announced by 9 November, 2017. Schedule for your pitch and all the slot lists will be out by 14 November.
Will I be able to get separate timings for each of my pitches if I have more than one pitch?
Srinivas: You will get only 15 minutes slot with each buyer irrespective of the number of pitches.
Will I get an opportunity to engage in a one-one discussion with a buyer beyond the time scheduled for me?
Srinivas: No, you can’t do that because unfortunately the timing is extremely tight.
How will I know about the feedback from the buyer?
Srinivas: You can know it directly from them or else after the event.
Is there anything happening besides the pitches at the summit?
Srinivas: Yes, panel discussions are happening on both the days on pitching and funding related topics.Day one that is 16 November has an opening panel discussion from 9:30 am to 10:00 am with an introduction. It will be followed by one-on-one sessions from 10:00 am to 12:30 pm. The second half will have an enlightening panel discussion on co-production from 4:30pm to 5:15 pm.
Day two that is 17 November will have a panel discussion from 9:30 am to 10:15 am about “The Tips and Tricks to Pitching”. This will be indeed very useful for pitchers and those who are planning to do so in future.From 2:00 pm to 2:30 pm there will be a case study about developing,marketing and IP. From 4:30 pm to 5:45 pm there will be a master panel discussion with feedbacks and suggestions from international visitors. Also on 18 November, there will be a special session for animation, visual effects, comics and gaming named as “AVGC session” at Bangalore Palace from 2:30 pm to 3:30 pm at the “Bengaluru Tech Summit”.
Will I be paid any expenses for travel, conveyance etc?
Srinivas: There is no reimbursement for travel or conveyance.
Is there any fees that one needs to pay ABAI for participation? Can a studio/ individual attend the summit even if they are not pitching?
Srinivas: There is no fees for participation. Only participants can attend.
How does my pitch stay confidential? Is there any preference for Karnataka / Bengaluru creator/ pitcher/ companies or ABAI members?
Srinivas: All efforts will be taken to keep it confidential. A mutual NDA will be signed too.Everyone will be given an equal and fair chance without being biased.
Will studios/pitchers outside Karnataka be eligible for grants/ funding as per AVGC policy? Can they register without specifying the pitch and make presentations on the spot?
Srinivas: Only if they have a registered office in Karnataka with over 50 per cent staff recruited from the state.Pitches have to be specified during registration to make presentations.
Dan Sarto (co-founder, publisher, editor-in-chief, Animation World Network)
Dan Sarto is co-founder, publisher and editor-in-chief of Animation World Network – AWN.com. After being launched in 1996, AWN.com has become one of the largest, most comprehensive and respected publishers of animation and visual effects news and information resources on the internet. Key publication websites include AnimationWorld Magazine, VFXWorld Magazine and the Animation Flash newsletter. Each month, AWN’s portals are visited by over 300,000 unique readers from more than 100 countries.
Aaron Davidson (Amazon Studios development executive- kids programming )
In over three years at Amazon Studios, Aaron Davidson has brought over 160 half-hours of programming to life. Focusing on creator driven shows with unique characters and perspectives, he developed the critically acclaimed series Danger & Eggs, and helped manage the productions of award winning series including Niko and the Sword of Light, Annedroids, and Little Big Awesome, among others. Previously he worked at JASH and Fox ADHD.
Antony Reed (CEO, Game Developers’ Association Australia)
Antony Reed is a 26-year veteran of the interactive entertainment industry. With global experience in game development and publishing, Antony has been a marketing brain behind some of the world’s biggest games franchises, including Command & Conquer, Baldur’s Gate, Fallout and various Star Trek titles. He has won numerous awards for his campaigns.
Dominic Gardiner ( CEO Jetpack Distribution Limited)
Dominic is the chief executive officer (CEO) of kids and family content distribution company Jetpack Distribution Limited. He founded the company in 2014 with studio production partner Samka Productions and it has gone on to become a leading distributor of global kids shows including Dennis & Gnasher Unleashed, Talking Tom and Friends, Yoko and Kitty is Not a Cat.The company prides itself on working in partnership with kids’ content producers. As well as finding the best homes for their shows, it consults on a range of areas from financing to marketing, helping producers build the profile of their work. Jetpack offers a bespoke and flexible service tailored for the individual needs of each producer.
Justine Bannister ( Founder of Just B)
Justine is a trilingual children’s media consultant with 25 years’ experience accrued most notably at 20th Century Fox, Disney Channels France and Lagardère France. Her skillset spans animation production, development, post-production, distribution, acquisitions, co-productions, marketing, brand and community management and project evaluation. JUST B clients include animation from Spain, NHK Japan, TFO Canada, Reed Midem, Shanghai Media Group China, Animation South Africa, Pro-Chile, Go-N Productions France, Shanghai TV and Film Festival, Cinekid Festival, Telefilm Canada & SODEC Quebec, Spider Eye UK and Tinker Group.
Alison Warner (vice president of I.P. sales, acquisitions and co-productions for Technicolor Creative Development based out of London)
Alison Warner develops and implements sales strategies for TCD’s in-house animated properties and actively sources new properties to acquire or co-produce. In this role, she was instrumental in securing the rights to The Deep and part of the team that helped put Technicolor’s animated shows Atomic Puppet and The Deep into production. She has taken responsibility for managing exploitation of all rights of The Deep and Atomic Puppet worldwide. Prior to joining Technicolor, Warner served over five years as VP, European Sales for Cookie Jar Entertainment Inc (now DHX Media), where she was responsible for the distribution of their content across the UK and Northern Europe. She is also on the advisory board for the Children’s Media Conference.
Blake Mizzi (director and co-founder, League of Geeks)
Blake Mizzi is the Director and co-founder of League of Geeks, a Melbourne based Game Development Studio and Publisher. He grew the company from nothing nearly seven years ago to self-publishing and launching their debut game Armello internationally in September 2015. Armello and League of Geeks have had a notable journey, including running one of Australia’s largest kickstarter projects, and creating a company model where half of all profits are paid back to their contributors based on a task point system, they have gamified their work life. League of Geeks and Armello have been nominated for a host of awards including the IGF’s, Indiecade, Indie prize, Studio of the Year at the Australian Developer Awards and won Kotaku’s Australian Game of the Year for 2015.
Al Gibb (CEO Mighty Serious)
Al Gibb is the CEO of Melbourne, Australia based video games company Mighty Serious. Mighty Serious specialises in delivering behaviour change projects through gamification.The Mighty Serious approach gathers industry experts across game design, data science, positive psychology and emergent tech to deliver innovative outcomes for organisations. Mighty Serious is a division of Mighty Games who specialise in making smart mobile games that pack a big punch in the free-to-play casual games market with titles such as Disney Crossy Road, Shooty Skies and Charming Runes.