Post MIPCOM musings…

MUSO Co-founder & CSO Chris Elkins provides his thoughts on “The Streaming Offensive” and other key themes from MIPCOM 2019. 

MUSO was at MIPCOM last week, the largest online entertainment market. This was our 4th visit and every year presents new opportunities, themes and fascinating insights. Here MUSO Co founder & CSO Chris Elkins provides his thoughts on “The Streaming Offensive” and other key themes from MIPCOM 2019.

1. What were the main talking points of MIPCOM 2019?

Consolidation was staring you in the face in Cannes this year. HBO’s stand now merged into WarnerMedia, Sky Vision with NBCUniversal. Next year, with Disney/Fox, Viacom/CBS and Paramount, it will be even more startling.

Obviously the shift to a D2C model…and mindset… was top of the agenda for both buyers and sellers of content. Listening to WarnerMedia Entertainment chairman Bob Greenblatt talk about a move away from live linear programming to on demand, and a focus on unlocking value from their rich catalogue of assets was inspiring. Bob said: “It’s a treasure-trove of great shows…movies and original series are the reasons people want these platforms, but then you round them out with all this great additional content”.

2. Is the TV/FIlm market buoyant or fearful – what does the next year hold?

HETV has just been a runaway juggernaut the past decade, but speaking to clients this year people are still excited, but somewhat uncertain.

Returns, even with big Netflix output deals, are getting smaller. And with broadcasters competitively paying similar values, sometimes up to £2m per episode, sustainability is being seriously scrutinised.

3. What was MUSO’s focus at MIPCOM?

For the first time, MUSO was presenting our title-level data platform Discover to MIPCOM, and it was a driver of so many valuable insights and conversations with clients and new contacts. Here are a few significant takehomes:

• Producers, sales teams, broadcasters and platforms alike are all at different stages of optimising around data within their businesses.

• Many of the big streamers are chasing unscripted now as heavily as scripted.

• Demand for documentaries was a big talking point – in particular factual, sports and music.

• AVOD is ready for a big year. Tubi, Pluto TV and Rakuten TV are all plugged into serious data. We’re here to help them figure out a big part of their global and regional D2C puzzle by measuring demand by a global piracy audience… or as one broadcaster called it, the shadow audience.

• Supernatural as a genre is still perennially popular, but regionality and originality is becoming more and more important for global audiences. K-drama ‘Hotel del Luna’ is a perfect example of this – a breakout hit and a buzz show at MIPCOM, which is indexing high for awareness, engagement and fandom within young demographics. MUSO’s genre data for global demand supports this trend.

4. What are your key takeaways from MIPCOM?

Data is starting to be weaponized outside of the platforms. Netflix is still behind but Amazon is sharing great insights with their partners. Production companies, broadcasters…even talent agencies we spoke with.. are mindful this is the year they need to expand their use of data , or get left behind.

5. Any final thoughts?

Cannes’ Croisette may have been partially shut, but launch parties, with their mix of new and familiar faces, were seriously impressive this year. Particular props to Endeavor Content for the Wu-Tang Clan double header!

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