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Welsh programme to boost indie’s international ambitions

Welsh authorities have set up Kick Start, a new initiative to help independent producers in the country forge relationships with international partners and secure business from international territories.

The scheme will be managed by media advisory Rights TV with investment from S4C Commercial, The Welsh Government and Creative Skillset Cymru’s Skills for the Digital Economy programme.

Local indies will be able to access funding for development staff and can also access mentoring and legal advice as well as guidance from an unnamed US talent agent.

Sion Hughes, senior business affairs manager, Rights TV, said: “We hope Kick Start will support factual producers who have a long term strategy and drive them in their ambitions to secure significant international growth.”

The focus of the programme will be to provide practical assistance to Welsh production companies to maximise their opportunities at MIPCOM, MIPTV and other markets.

Elin Morris, corporate and commercial director, S4C, added: “We are delighted to be a partner in this initiative, which we hope will assist Welsh production companies to win international business, as well as lead to new coproduction opportunities for S4C.”

Edwina Hart, the Welsh government minister for economy, science and transport said: “This programme will help Welsh production companies pursue co-production and commissioning opportunities and exploit new international markets.”

Applications for Kick Start grants are now being accepted and there will be ten available in the first year of the scheme. The applications are assessed by a panel from the three financial partners and a maximum of £7,000 (US$11,732) is allocated per project, with 75% of funding being contributed by S4C Commercial, The Welsh Government and Creative Skillset Cymru, and the remaining 25% is to be contributed by applicants.