DUBAI & LOS ANGELES | 13 February.  The organizers of DISCOP Dubai, one of the most important television events with a special focus on the Middle East and the Indian Sub-Continent, are proud to announce that 20 projects will be showcased during the premiere edition of the ARAB FORMAT ACCELERATOR.

To be held in the context of DISCOP Dubai 2018 (25 to 27 February) and set to become a permanent fixture of the 3-day annual market, the ARAB FORMAT ACCELERATOR (AFA) is a joint initiative between Mrs. Khulud Abu HOMOS, CEO of the ARAB FORMAT LAB, a television content developer based in Dubai, Cairo and Jeddah; and the organizers of the Dubai edition of the DISCOP film, television, online content and adaptation rights markets.

This initiative is further evidence that demand for high quality Arabic content in the region has increased by almost 40% between 2011-2016, while western drama’s share of viewing decreased by an average of 55%, creating opportunities for regional producers to dominate the airwaves and secure their share of the market.

Mrs. Khulud Abu HOMOS, ARAB FORMAT LAB, explains, “We are amidst a positive transformation on the demand for socially relevant international formats. Lots of regional executives ask me “Why do we need to imitate successful international TV concepts? Can’t we create our own?”  The value of shows that can be adapted resides in the benefit of training talent on success proven concepts and shortening the learning curve. In the Middle East, specifically in the Gulf and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, we are witnessing a drastic positive change in both governments’ focus and solid investment in local content and talents which is perceived as the most vital pillar to hold a valid media industry aimed at excellence, originality and financial viability”.

The 2-day AFA initiative will provide 20 up-and-coming creators and established producers with an opportunity to “elevator pitch” original ideas as well as existing concepts for scripted and unscripted TV shows in a wide spectrum of content genres.

These pitches will be directed at key production, commissioning and marketing executives driving television business across the Middle East and seeking fresh ideas. 

Judging the presentations and mentoring for the candidates will come from industry pros Fadi Ismail, Director of Group Drama (Productions & Distribution) O3 Productions/MBC Group (UAE); Yahya Sameh, CEO, PromOmedia (Egypt); Justus Verkerk, CEO, FCCE (Netherlands); Jan Salling, CEO, Missing Link Media & co-Chairman, FRAPA (Denmark); Mai El Khalifa, Head of Production and Business Development Senior Manager, Dubai TV (UAE).

“We believe it is important to train and support a new generation of creators who are able to meet the growing demand of the industry,” Patrick ZUCHOWICKI JUCAUD, founder and general director of DISCOP Markets, said of the new initiative.

Close to 750+ film, television, online content production and distribution executives driving entertainment and media business across the Middle East and the Indian Sub-Continent are expected to participate.

ABOUT DISCOP

Founded in 1991, DISCOP markets facilitate film, television, digital content and adaptation rights business in fast-developing world regions that are gradually taking on more developed entertainment and media marketplaces. These world-regions are also disrupting existing foreign sales and international coproduction business models.

DISCOP markets specifically target countries across Africa, Central and Eastern Europe, the Middle East, Asia and the Caribbean basin. Close to one hundred markets have taken place since 1991 in hotels and convention centers located in cities that play a key role in these dynamic marketplaces: Abidjan, Accra, Budapest, Dakar, Dubai, Istanbul, Johannesburg, Kuala Lumpur, Nairobi, Tashkent and Warsaw. 

DISCOP markets deliver meetings and visibility necessary to build relationships, pitch projects and close deals. They also provide valuable, actionable information and tools, along with unparalleled connections otherwise impossible. 

For more information on DISCOP DUBAI visit www.discop.com

PRESS RELATIONS: Lara PRESTON - RED FLAG - lara@redflag.co.za