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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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Facilities 50 2011 Back to Reports & survey Listing

A snapshot of Facilities 50 feedback from post houses about the issues facing them in the year ahead

Declining budgets

The familiar concern of falling budgets once again tops the list of concerns for the UK’s post sector. A massive proportion of post houses say this is the number one issue to deal with. A number of facilities, including Doghouse and Creativity Media,  call many of the budgets now available “unrealistic.” “Shrinking Budgets matched with unchanged demands on resources and expectations of quality,” are the key bugbears of De Lane Lea, which pretty much sums up the feelings of the rest of the post community. Speade adds that there’s an “increasing assumption that clients deserve something for nothing.”

It’s still a very competitive marketplace, which some still consider oversubscribed. In this kind of environment, undercutting is all but inevitable. Azimuth is irritated by “too many facilities/freelancers with kit doing it for less than cost just to try to stay afloat”. Framestore agrees, saying companies are “taking on work at a loss.” This is echoed by MPC, which says there’s also been an “unsustainable under-bidding for vfx work”. Clear Cut Pictures agrees there are still “people selling £10 for £9”. Smoke & Mirrors nicely sums up the situation: “A price war is the last thing we need. People; don’t panic, be good at what you do and people will always pay a fair price for quality.”

inhouse post
Post wings of production companies and broadcasters are, understandably, something post houses aren’t that keen on. “Channels, for example, Sky, doing all their post production inhouse” frustrates Splice. “Agencies using inhouse/group facilities” irritates Nice Biscuits and Bigbuoy. “The continued growth of inhouse post at both production companies and ad agencies,” is similarly singled out by Sequence Post, and “large corporate entities forcing producers to edit inhouse“ is a concern for Suite.

Big facilities
A lot of smaller facilities aren’t massively keen on bigger facilities, largely due to the package deals they can offer clients. Goldcrest says there’s an “incorrect assumption that a ‘total’ package is best value when all this does is increase the cost of supplying the service for the post house, with decreased or no profit margin.” Sequence Post is also concerned about “the largest facilities with the strongest financial backing undercutting all the smaller talented boutiques and making price matching an impossible feat.” So is Time Based Arts, which says “clients are getting used to paying loss leader rates for post offered by bigger shops desperate for work.”

Cheap technology
Nice Biscuits, Editz, WAM London, Preditors and M8media are amongst those concerned about the “proliferation of cheap kit” and “cheaper, more advanced technology” which it believes increases the likelihood of “cheap setups and one-man bands”.
regional hubs.

An increasing number of post houses single out regional centres as being a concern. With the BBC and other broadcasters committed to increasing network spend in the Nations and regions, some post houses believe they could potentially miss out on work that might otherwise have come their way. Rapid Pictures, Deluxe 142 and TVCSoho are amongst those saying increased regional commissions are a concern.

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