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December 2017

In the magazine
Only available in print
  • The Televisual Commercials 30
    Jon Creamer introduces Televisual's exclusive annual report, the Commercials 30, and finds that while budgets are down and production companies are under threat from agency in-house units, commercials producers are finding new horizons beyond ads too.
  • Commercials 30: Best in Show
    Commercials producers also get to vote for their favourite directors, stand out ads and top rated agencies along with their favourite post houses, editors and vfx ops. We reveal the results
  • Commercials 30: The Top 30
    Televisual reveals the Commercials 30 itself, the 30 top rated commercials production companies in the UK
  • Music in Motion
    So what’s next for the music behind the commercials? Will it be another year in the ascendant for London Grime perhaps? Portugese house? Afro beats or the Angolan kuduro sound?
  • Televisual Factual Festival report
    Last month saw Televisual's annual Factual Festival return to Bafta. How to stand out in a world of ever increasing viewer choice was the big theme this time. Tim Dams reports
  • Alison Kirkham in interview
    At the Televisual Factual Festival, the BBC's controller of factual Alison Kirkham outlined the shows the corporation is looking for in the year ahead
From the magazine
Available to read online
  • 2017: the year in review
    Two very different stories – the rise of SVOD players and the Harvey Weinstein abuse allegations – defined TV’s year. Tim Dams reports
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Production 100 2011 Back to Reports & survey Listing

Challenges and concerns for 2012
A shapshot of Production 100 feedback from indies about the issues facing them in the year ahead

Falling budgets
Once again falling budgets top the list of indie concerns, the third year in a row. Indies big and small, from Endemol to DLT Entertainment, Back2Back and Fresh One cite falling or tight budgets as their biggest challenge. “The squeeze on budgets is very real and yet the best talent still commands top rates. Something’s got to give,” says Oxford Scientific. Blakeway says indies are having to upgrade technology “without any enhancement in budgets.” Many worry about the cuts in funding at the BBC.


It’s all about “commissions, commissions, commissions” says Thumbs Up. Like Lambent, many want “series that return”. Cicada Bellwether also would like to “continue getting series rather than one offs commissioned.”

Retaining rights

“Hanging onto rights in an increasingly aggressive, post terms of trade broadcast culture,” is a challenge cited by Nerd TV that’s shared by many indies. “We’re having to deficit fund content but the broadcasters are taking more rights and a higher share of the profit,” says TalkbackThames. Googlebox says it wants to “continue securing commissions with reasonable margins and the ability to retain rights and back end.”

“Containing company costs and managing cash flow as some broadcasters are paying late,” is a challenge for Off the Fence. Hardcash wants broadcasters to “speed up the period from green light to actually triggering the cash flow on a project.” Superindies “It’s tough to compete with the superindies and their deep pockets,” says Outline Productions. Likewise, Reef TV cites the “dominance and power within the independent production sector by the superindies” as a key challenge.

Managing growth
Nutopia worries about “managing growth and putting systems in place which still retain a fun, creative small company environment.” Magnum Media and Rival Media both say managing growth is a priority, as does Firecracker which also wants to grow while “retaining the Firecracker brand values.”

Deficit finance

It’s “getting harder to pull together co-productions”, says Atlantic with US broadcasters in particular wanting to fully own shows to play on their global channels. Twofour says finance models are “more complex”. Impossible Pictures says “the commercial effort and cost required to raise finance and maintain liquidity of productions only increases.”


“Finding and retaining key talent on and off screen,” is a big issue for Icon Films. Splash Media says it’s a challenge to be able to hire “the industry’s best.” Development Because of the minimal profit margins available from network tariffs, “it’s difficult to maintain sufficient funding for talent and idea development,” says Modern TV.

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