New venture seeks production partners and creative talent

Award-winning online marketing and creative agency Digital Outlook is launching its own production division to develop, produce and distribute character-based intellectual property online, and in success, more broadly across all media including TV, licensing, retail and publishing.

The new studio is actively seeking production partners and creative talent to work with them on content and brand creation.

Angus Fletcher, former president of Jim Henson TV, Europe, is joining as Executive Producer. As a BAFTA award-winning TV executive with more than 20 years’ experience of producing and managing entertainment brands and franchises, Angus joins Jens Bachem, Managing Director at Digital Outlook and Creative Director Dino Burbidge to manage and spearhead the studio’s content creation.
The new company combines the agency’s firm grounding in developing engaging, interactive content and building audiences online for major entertainment companies including Buena Vista International, Chorion, Aardman Animations and Xbox, with traditional TV production, brand exploitation and deal-making expertise.

“This is a brand new business model marrying our digital expertise with more traditional development and production skills,” explains Angus Fletcher. “We are at the forefront of digital media and now plan to create entertaining, sustainable franchises which we can exploit across all media.”

Jens Bachem comments: “It’s about maximising creativity and minimising risk. It is much more economically viable to launch, test and improve an idea online – distributing via the likes of YouTube and MySpace – before taking it to the broadcasters and retailers.”

“We have been bringing our clients’ stories and characters to life online for years so it’s a very natural progression,” added Dino Burbidge. “It will allow us to experiment, take risks and build our knowledge, which will in turn help our existing clients.”

The studio’s output will cater for all ages including kids, teens and adults and span several genres. In addition to developing ideas generated in-house and by external writers, the studio plans to collaborate and co-produce with other production companies and media groups.

“The three questions we ask ourselves of any project are: is it a good idea; can it start life in the digital space and, in success, does it have the potential to migrate off-line?” adds Fletcher.

The studio already has an active development slate and plans to develop and exploit up to 10 franchises over the next two years.
Digital Outlook Studios is building its new division with Kate Hall moving across from the company’s marketing division to spearhead distribution and syndication.

Kate has a vast amount of experience in digital media. Prior to joining Digital Outlook she was Director, Entertainment at AOL UK where she acted as the strategic and tactical lead for the TV, film, music, games, teens and kids content channels.

http://www.digitaloutlookstudios.com

For further information please contact:

Karen Durham-Diggins
020 8989 2541
07808 584 624
kdd@easynet.co.uk

Notes to editors

- Digital Outlook (www.digital-outlook.com) is an established and award-winning marketing and creative agency specialising in entertainment and media. It helps its clients promote their brands and engage with their audiences online, on mobile and IPTV. Clients include Aardman Animations, Walt Disney Company, Buena Vista International, Xbox, Chorion, the Sci-Fi Channel, Cartoon Network and BBC Worldwide.

- The key drives for the new business are: the continued growth of online and broadband; explosion in social media community sites; growth in online advertising; proliferation of online creation tools; increased costs and lead times for traditional TV and production companies.

- Angus Fletcher, the studios’ executive producer, has worked as an executive in the television industry for more than two decades, his experience running from children’s programming to drama. He has deep knowledge of the global creative, production, co-production and distribution business. He has recently co-created and produced the 65-part series Five Minutes More for ABC Australia and the Disney Channel. Until 2003, he served as president of Jim Henson Television, Europe and joint president of the global TV group. His work has been broadcast by the BBC, the Disney Channel, Channel 4, ITV, Carlton, Nickelodeon and RTL. He was the co-creator and executive producer of the BAFTA-winning The Hoobs (Channel 4 and Nickelodeon).

- Digital Outlook Studios (www.digitaloutlookstudios.com) plans to monetize IP both online and through offline channels such as TV, mobile, publishing and retail.

Published on: 12:00AM on 7th March 2007