Tuesday, 3 July 2012

£1m television production scheme aims to boost Scotland's TV industry

Scottish Enterprise and Creative Scotland announce
the launch of the Television Production Scheme. 
Scotland's independent television production companies should soon be gearing up for a world-wide push thanks to a new TV scheme.

The launch of the £1m Television Production Scheme, announced today by Scottish Enterprise and Creative Scotland, is aimed at providing a significant boost to the Scottish broadcast TV industry.

By providing co-investment, alongside a private sector investor, the new scheme will increase the ability of Scottish TV producers to secure UK network commissions that can then be sold in international and secondary markets.

This direct support to independent production companies in Scotland will give producers access to finance to make high-quality, high-value programmes with national and international appeal, enabling them to more effectively exploit their intellectual assets in different territories.

Scottish Government cabinet secretary Fiona Hyslop said the Television Production Scheme was a welcome boost for production companies located in Scotland.

The Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs added, "By providing access to finance, it will improve the scale and quality of Scottish productions, making them more attractive to broadcasters at home and abroad and helping to enhance our nation’s reputation for creative excellence.

"Television and digital media support 42,000 jobs and are an important part of our creative industries - a thriving sector of the Scottish economy with tremendous potential for growth.

"This Government is creating the right conditions for the creative industries sector to flourish and I am pleased to see Scottish Enterprise and Creative Scotland working closely with the television production industry to ensure appropriate support is in place."

Jane Muirhead, Chair of PACT in Scotland and Chair of the TV Working Group said, "This important initiative has been designed by listening to the independent TV sector and responding to some of the challenges that currently face the industry.

"This scheme will serve as a lever to get content made, and to exploit and take that content global. It will support business and creativity and safeguard jobs, while building a strong skill base for the future.

"I'm really excited about this scheme and it's a real achievement for everyone on the TV Working Group. A huge thank you to Creative Scotland and Scottish Enterprise for their collaborative approach and for providing a well-structured and meaningful initiative that is open to all independent producers in Scotland."

PACT (Producers Alliance for Cinema and Television) is the trade association in the UK representing independent television, feature film, animation and new media.

Linda McPherson, director of Creative Industries at Scottish Enterprise, said, "We're keen to support the independent production sector in Scotland achieve significant growth in new markets and territories.

"Through our work with Scottish companies, we know there's a huge opportunity for them to tap into this growth, especially in overseas markets.

"This new fund will provide a way for businesses to fully exploit their intellectual property throughout the world and allow them to accelerate their growth.

"Our industry partner PACT recently announced 12 months of growth in international sales of TV and related content by UK independent production companies, with a 13% annual increase in revenue from £1.25 billion in 2009 to £1.41 billion.

"The US is still the largest export market for UK producers with sales growing by 13% to £526 million. The international market is ripe, and we want to support independent TV production companies in Scotland to access it."

Caroline Parkinson, Director of Creative Development, Creative Scotland welcomed the partnership with Scottish Enterprise and said, "This scheme will provide Scottish producers with key strategic investment into their television projects, which will allow them to leverage significant co-investment and will lead to an increase of quality programmes from Scotland that will reach a global audience."

Creative Scotland, who will be managing the scheme, leads an industry group that sets priorities and ensures a clear and integrated approach to the development of the television sector from broadcasters, independent companies, trade associations, support agencies and government.

The Television Production Scheme was a key recommendation of this group and was designed in consultation with them. Full details are available at http://www.creativescotland.com/investment/filmandbroadcasting/televisionproduction.

Scottish Enterprise and Creative Scotland will be hosting a workshop to provide further details on the scheme at Creative Scotland's Glasgow offices. For more information, check out http://tvproductionworkshop.eventbrite.com.

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