Basic Lead, the organizers of the region-centric DISCOP conferences and expos which target film, TV and digital content producers, has announced plans to expand its operations in Africa by 2019.
In an announcement, Basic Lead stated that two new DISCOP markets will be added by the end of 2019 – one in Zanzibar in 2018, to focus on East Africa’s independent film, television and digital content production sectors and the second one in Lagos by 2019, centered on Nigeria, recognised as one of the world’s most promising entertainment single-market ecosystems alongside China, India and Indonesia.
Currently, it has markets in Abidjan, Dubai and Johannesburg, providing a platform for partner companies to buy, sell and co-produce multi-platform content in 115 fast expanding countries where new technologies, modern infrastructures and rising disposable income fuel growth.
“Movies and TV programs have always been part of the fabric of the countries we cover with DISCOP. What is changing is the ability for broadcasters, pay-tv platforms, mobile operators and on-demand video services to monetize the consumption of entertainment content, and for local producers to feed an immense appetite for homegrown entertainment,” says Patrick Zuchowicki, founder of DISCOP. “These countries will represent in the next five years 35% of global wholesale licensing revenues derived primarily from intra-regional trade. By then and with five DISCOP markets a year, we expect to draw 6,000 delegates, three times more than we do now.”
DISCOP Zanzibar and DISCOP Lagos will have their own identities, format and agenda. Cross-cultural bridges will be built between these two new markets and the ones in Abidjan, Dubai and Johannesburg. Identical research, promotional, meetings organization and travel planning services will be provided to all delegates ahead of each market.
DISCOP Zanzibar is partnering with the Zanzibar International Film Festival (ZIFF), that is about to celebrate its 20th edition. The inaugural DISCOP Zanzibar will take place during ZIFF 2018, creating the ultimate film, television, digital event in East Africa. ZIFF Festival Director, Fabrizio Colombo, explains further: “As ZIFF celebrates its 20th anniversary, we could not be more excited to partner with DISCOP, the most respected name in African content markets. This partnership is an important milestone for the development of the East African multi-platform entertainment content production industries, and will be instrumental in driving this often-neglected market forward. DISCOP Zanzibar will be a unique event, as unique as the island of Zanzibar itself.”
Launched in 2012, the Johannesburg market has become a key destination to acquire and co-produce content “Made in Africa” and sell international film, TV series, adaptation rights, digital content and packaged TV channels into Sub-Saharan Africa. 1,000+ acquisition, development, production and distribution executives from 70+ countries will converge to Johannesburg for three days of deal-making, knowledge-transfer and networking opportunities. 250+ public and commercial broadcasters, cable, satellite and mobile payTV operators, streaming services servicing the fast-growing Sub-Saharan marketplace will also be in attendance seeking innovative content, fresh ideas and cross-border projects. With the success of German cold-war thrillers inspiring international broadcasters and streaming platforms to commission German-language shows, Germany will be honored as the DISCOP Johannesburg 2017 “Guest Country”.
Founded in 1991, DISCOP initially helped companies in the entertainment industry explore opportunities in former Soviet Union countries, by organizing region-centric events targeted at buyers, sellers and producers of multi-platform content. It’s has now expanded to 115 countries. Between markets, DISCOP will soon host online content “flash sales” featuring time-limited promotions.