US$289 million deals closed at ATF and ScreenSingapore 2017

This year’s Asia TV Forum & Market (ATF) and 7th ScreenSingapore closed off with US$289 million worth of deals sealed.

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ATF 2017

The 18th edition of Asia TV Forum & Market (ATF) and 7th ScreenSingapore, Asia’s leading entertainment content market and conference, ended on a strong note on 1 December 2017, with an estimated US$289 million worth of deals sealed over four days.


Record attendance with major studios and 24 country pavilions at ATF and ScreenSingapore market floor

From 29 November to 1 December 2017, 5,498 delegates from 54 countries networked at the market floor, as they sought opportunities to buy, sell, co-produce and distribute content.

A total of 760 exhibiting companies from around the world showcased their latest programming and content – including major studio such as CBS Studios International, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, NBC Universal, Paramount Pictures, Sony Pictures Television, The Walt Disney Company, Twentieth Century FOX Television Distribution and Warner Bros. International Television.

As a testament to ATF and ScreenSingapore’s global standing, this year’s market featured a record-breaking 24 official pavilions representing countries such as Australia, China, France, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Norway, Russia, South Korea, Singapore, Taiwan, Turkey and United Kingdom.


Preliminary estimates from exhibitor feedback put the total value of deals brokered at $289 million. Amongst announcements made at ATF and ScreenSingapore 2017 were:

  • BBC’s “Orphan Black” being remade in Japan for free-to-air broadcaster Tokai TV
  • Mediacorp Audio Post and HK Television Entertainment Company to co-produce the “Blue Tick” original series, which is also the first Toggle Originals co-production
  • Nickelodeon and Telkomsel launched the Emmy award-winning “Nickelodeon Play” app in Indonesia
  • Nippon TV finalised a third deal with MF Yapim for the Turkish format of Japanese drama series “My Son”
  • One Life Studios licensed “Porus” to Thailand’s Workpoint Entertainment
  • Yue Cheng Technology enriched its cinema library with narrative VR film, “Dirrogate” by RealVision – this was the first VR film distribution deal signed at ATF 2017


Coinciding with the Singapore Media Festival’s Country of Focus, various entertainment content players also sealed partnerships with Indonesian counterparts:

  • BeachTV will collaborate with Indonesia’s Nation Pictures to produce a new action-packed MMA reality series, “BEACH BRAWL”
  • BPI and SAAVA formed a strategic alliance to create inter-regional creative producing and media investment network


With a vibrant market, attendees from the market floor comprising exhibitors, buyers and participants spoke strongly about the event:

  • Saevar Lemke, VP – International Program Sales EMEA & APAC, Discovery Global Enterprises: “Our business in Asia Pacific is growing. At the same time, ATF is growing year-on year so it’s a perfect location for us where we generate sales and get to know new clients. I encourage European broadcasters and buyers from other territories to come to ATF, as all the major players are here. ATF is a great market to be at.”


  • “ATF is an essential market for us because it brings together content creators, buyers and licensors in one of the fastest growing regions in the world for entertainment distribution,” said Jonathan Greenberg, Senior Vice President, Regional Sales, Asia Pacific, for Paramount Worldwide Television Licensing and Distribution. “The explosive growth of new platforms and opportunities throughout Asia makes this an exceptionally exciting time and ATF is an ideal venue for stakeholders on all sides to come together and help shape the future of entertainment in the region.”


  • Vivek Lath, Managing Director, GoQuest Media Ventures: “We’ve been at ATF for the past three years and will definitely be back next year. This has become an annual pilgrimage for us. Being at ATF enables us to not just meet buyers from the region – we have also been able to talk to a lot of content owners too. Southeast Asia is a very important region and we have been expanding significantly in this region. This market is growing so fast that it’s important to enter now rather than later.”


  • Win Khine, CEO, ABC Content Solutions Co., Ltd: “I’ve attended ATF for over five years, and plan to come again next year. With a good spread of international offerings, it has been a very effective platform for us to purchase content for our TV and OTT platforms. Additionally, networking over the four days has allowed me to develop good relationships with existing and new partners.”


  • Gigi Ko, Vice President of Distribution, Celestial Pictures Limited: “The ATF market is dynamic with many attendees and has been fruitful for us because of the many new programmes and conferences available.”


  • Rachel Kim, Broadcast Business Headquarters, Entertainment Programming, SBS Viacom Co., Ltd.: “This was my first year at ATF and ScreenSingapore, and I decided to come because the market is getting stronger so I can seek programmes of various genres and for different platforms (cable network, online and mobile) efficiently. Compared to other Asian markets, ATF and ScreenSingapore is a better place for meeting programme providers and accessing programmes from around the world, and I hope to return next year.”


  • Rachel Wu, Executive Director, Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA): “2017 is the 10th consecutive year that TAITRA has been at ATF and ScreenSingapore, and companies under our pavilion have been able to develop good business relationships and secure opportunities through the platform. Additionally, the increasing number of countries represented by buyers at the annual event has generated greater results for exhibiting companies. ATF and ScreenSingapore is an important platform for us, and we will continue to bring content players from Taiwan here.


Over 100 industry veterans delivered fresh insights at four-day conference

Alongside the market was the ATF and ScreenSingapore conference, where delegates gathered crucial knowledge about today’s content business from more than 100 speakers. Industry heavyweights who shared their expertise included Hary Tanoesoedibjo, Founder and chairman of MNC Group; Jan Rezab, Founder of Socialbakers; and Pablo Gomez, Regional Head (APAC) of Kantar Milward Brown who spoke at the ATF Leaders’ Summit (28 November).

Keynote panellists and speakers for “Production Day” (30 November) were David Levine, Co-Head, HBO Drama Series Home Box Office; Jin Woo Hwang, General Manager / Head of Formats & Development, Global Content Development Team, CJ E&M; Laura Burrell, Head of Formats, Viacom International Media Networks; Michael Dick, Vice President, Acquisition, Management and Content Acquisitions, Fox Networks Group Asia; and Stephen Lambert, CEO, Studio Lambert.

At the Southeast Asian Film Financing (SAFF) conference (1 December) keynote, Kurt Rieder, Executive Vice President (APAC), 20th Century Fox; Rajiv Chilaka, Founder & CEO, Green Gold Animation Pvt Ltd; and Zainir Aminullah, CEO, Ideate Media shed light on how local stories can be nurtured for global distribution. The session was moderated by Shad Hashmi, Vice President, Digital Development Global Markets & Operations, Asia, BBC Worldwide.


Pitch competitions continue to open doors for up-and-coming Asian content creators

Aside from being a platform for buying, selling and knowledge exchange, ATF and ScreenSingapore continues to provide opportunities for Asian talents to showcase their creativity.

In 2018, ATF and ScreenSingapore will launch the first-ever online movie pitch for the China market, in partnership with Perfect World Pictures (PWPIC).

Mr John Ho, CEO, Perfect World Pictures (Singapore) said, “This new pitch presents a great opportunity for the Asian community to grab a piece of the large online streaming market in China. We believe that the audience in China would be keen on the content from the rest of Asia, to experience the many different cultures present outside of their country. ATF and ScreenSingapore is definitely the right platform for us to launch this new initiative to seek out new talents. We have seen the event progress and grow over the last 18 years and recognise it as a bridge between China and the rest of Asia.”

At the inaugural ATF Animation Pitch, “The Western Journey of Pigsy” by studio2 Animation Lab (Taiwan) was crowned champion in recognition of its creativity, originality and potential for export. Supported by Green Gold Animation Pvt. Ltd. as the global partner, the competition facilitated the exchange of ideas and talent between the leading international television and distribution producers, with Asian-based creators of new and original children’s animation concepts.

For its outstanding submission, studio2 Animation Lab won a US$19,000 prize from the competition’s global partner, Green Gold Animation Pvt Ltd. This will include a US$2,500 cash award, and a consultancy package worth US$16,500 that is tailor-made for the winner to develop their animation, making it ready to pitch to broadcasters.

At the second ATF Formats Pitch, Indonesian producer Gamaliel Paulus (Gammy) received the top prize of a S$3,500 cash award and a customised consultancy package worth S$16,500, for “Ranking”. The concept demonstrated innovativeness, potential for international appeal, as well as a capability to return for multiple series.

Backed by all3media International, ATF Formats Pitch is designed to discover innovative concepts for new and original non-scripted entertainment formats from the pan-Asia, and exposes ideas for export and development within and even outside of the region.

The SAFF Project Market returned for a third run, and saw 15 finalists meet with international co-producing partners, festival programmers, distributors, commissioners and financiers.

After three days of intense live pitching, “The Hunted” by producers Delon Tio and Allen Jordan (Indonesia) won the S$20,000 Aurora Producing Award, RED Digital Camera Award and S$20,000 Yellow Box Soundscape Award, while “Mina-Anud” by producers Bianca Balbuena and Bradley Liew, and director Kerwin Go (Philippines) won the US$10,000 Basecamp Colour Prize.

SAFF Project Market is a partnership between ScreenSingapore, the Southeast Asian Audio-Visual Association (SAAVA) and Ties That Bind: Asia/Europe Producers Workshop (TTB), and is supported by the Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF).

Under the umbrella of Singapore Media Festival, the next edition of ATF and ScreenSingapore will return from 4 to 7 December 2018.

This newsletter will cease from 15 December 2017 onwards and will resume on 12 January 2018.