Exhibitors at MIPTV could be relegated to just three floors inside the Palais in 2020 as organiser Reed Midem moves closer to finalising “drastic” plans for the future of the market.
TBI has learnt that a large contingent from Reed Midem was called to London earlier this week for a major meeting at ITV Studios with a range of distributors.
Reed Midem is understood to have informed the group – which included the likes of Endemol Shine International, Banijay Rights, Passion Distribution, TCB Media Rights and several others – that it plans to shut down the entirety of the Palais except for -1, 7 and 8, with all outside stands moved indoors across the three floors. The group has said the initiative will save costs for all those involved.
Currently, MIPTV takes place across all nine floors of the Palais, which includes Palais floors -1, 0, 1, 3, 4 and 5, and Riviera 7, 8 and 9.
The plan – which is to be pitched to US studios next week – is not yet finalised, and Reed Midem has said it will listen to all feedback from distributors; however, they have cautioned partners that “big changes” need to take place.
The meeting comes on the back of Reed Midem agreeing to split contracts for MIPTV and MIPCOM, allowing exhibitors to opt out of paying for both markets if they only plan to attend one of them.
If the plan to centralise MIPTV inside the Palais moves ahead, US studios are believed to have first dibs on floor space because they currently rent the largest area. It is believed the order of selection for new stands will come down to the square footage of current stands, with those renting smaller spaces getting to make selections later on in the process.
However, it is thought that only one stand-building company will be tasked with constructing all the stands, for which some sample models were unveiled at Tuesday’s (25 June) meeting.
Many distributors are deeply unhappy with the plan to move MIPTV indoors, which was first revealed by TBI in April, arguing that a new arrangement of stands will be confusing to buyers and claustrophobic for those involved.
“Most buyers don’t know what anyone’s stand number is. All they know is that [one distributor] is next to another, and they line up their diaries that way. It will be chaos. Meetings will be delayed and they will end up not happening,” one source tells TBI, adding that Reed Midem is taking a “short-sighted view” to save costs.
Elsewhere, some exhibitors – who have long-standing relationships with those who build their stands – have also highlighted that the plan could potentially put some building firms “out of business” and have knock-on effects for MIPCOM, which does not currently stand to be affected by any of the changes.
There is also concern that US studios and larger distributors will snap up coveted spots across Riviera 7 and 8, leaving less savoury positions in -1 for remaining exhibitors.
Prices for the new stands are to be unveiled in September, which means the chosen builder could have less than eight months to plot out the new stands.
Reed Midem declined comment. Organisers have said previously that a plan for MIPTV 2020 will be shared in July.