Message from the President and CEO
Thanks to its funding contributors, the Government of Canada and Canadian cable and satellite distributors, the Canada Media Fund (CMF) was able to use its program budget of $360.7 M to support a total of 510 productions, triggering $1.2B in production activity. For every $1 of CMF funding to new productions, $3.36 in production volume was generated.
In 2013-2014, the CMF’s program budget was reduced by 4% compared to the previous year due to anticipated decline in revenues. This created new challenges for the CMF and we implemented several actions to minimize any potential impact on the industry. Operating costs, including industry partnerships and program administration, were reduced by 6% in keeping with the objective to commit the most funds possible to its funding programs.
Despite a decline in budgets, the CMF fulfilled its mandate to foster and develop, finance and promote the production of Canadian content for all audiovisual media platforms. Key performance indicators reveal that we have succeeded in providing the financing and support required to help create compelling, successful content for Canadian and world audiences. In 2013-2014 alone, the CMF managed 2,054 funding applications and funded 1,371 projects, both television and digital media. Our programs were almost fully subscribed at 98%, indicating that programs meet the industry’s requirements.
Canadian audiovisual content continued to garner critical acclaim and reach new audiences. The CMF tracked 273 CMF-funded projects that received nominations in some 56 award ceremonies and 242 wins. Over 28 productions were sold internationally in 55 regions based on information made public. In the 2012-2013 broadcast year, overall share of viewing for CMF-funded projects during prime time reached 13% in the English language market and 40% in French. In 2013-2014, the CMF measured 19.2 million visits to digital media projects it supports.
In 2013-2014 we have continued to improve our processes and actions to better meet the industry’s needs. Satisfaction with the relevance of our research reports is at 79%. Client satisfaction with program administration is at 86%. Stakeholder satisfaction with the CMF’s communications role has reached a high of 91% and the satisfaction rating is very high at 98% in regards to the 2013-2014 industry consultation tour.
Foster and Develop
To further the exchange of ideas and promote coproduction, the CMF focused on strategic partnerships, supporting 49 television and digital media conferences and festivals across Canada and in major international markets such as the US, Brazil, the UK and France. Each event is a renewed opportunity for us to meet with stakeholders and to learn from each other, promote Canadian content to new audiences and build new relationships for co-production opportunities.
To ensure that the CMF’s funding policies remain aligned with emerging trends and developments, in Canada and internationally, we continued to produce and disseminate industry intelligence, leading to the publication of 16 research reports and 43 posts on the Trendscape blog. In addition to the blog, the CMF also continued to update and optimize its online resources such as the Crowdfunding microsite.
Through its Convergent Stream, which supports the creation of television and digital media content for consumption by Canadians anytime, anywhere, the CMF financed the production of 467 television programs. These were complemented by 213 associated digital media projects, such as games, rich interactive media such as web series, ebooks, and social media projects, allowing for additional audience engagement with supported content. Convergent Stream production commitments amounted to $305.6M in 2013-2014 and triggered just under $1.2B in production volume. Projects emanated from all regions of the country, in a cross-section of languages spoken by Canadians, namely English, French and Aboriginal languages, as well as Mandarin, Spanish, Farsi, and Italian. Twenty-six programs delivered television audiences of over one million viewers (2012-2013 season).
Through its Experimental Stream, which encourages the creation of innovative, interactive digital media content and software applications, the CMF provided over $34.5M in funding to 83 projects at the development, production and marketing stages, triggering $60.4M in industry activity. Applications originated from across Canada and included original content for the web, games for online use, smartphones, tablets and interactive consoles, and software and mobile applications.
New programs were introduced to meet the industry’s current and upcoming needs. A Framework for International Digital Media Coproduction and a Digital Media Coproduction Incentive focused on international partnerships between Canadian and foreign producers. An Accelerator Partnership Pilot Program (A3P) was launched to provide producers of digital media projects funded through the CMF’s Experimental Stream with better access to mentorship, market and capital.
The CMF and Telefilm Canada developed the Eye on Canada brand to identify Canadian content to diverse audiences and worked with the Canadian Media Production Association, private funds and over 30 other partners at the international, national, provincial and municipal level to make Canadian content visible and accessible to all audiences and to promote Canadian successes.
Nationally, red carpet events were held during the Calgary International Film Festival and the St. John’s International Women’s Film Festival. International audiences were targeted at MIPTV and MIPCOM in Cannes as well as the Screen Producers Association of Australia Conference in Melbourne and National Association of Television Production Executives in Miami.
Work has continued to increase demand by making Canadian content available and visible to consumers anytime, anywhere, in any way through a centralized repository of curated classic and current Canadian content. A database of 16,000 titles has been reviewed. Market interest in the titles was assessed and the CMF and Telefilm Canada have initiated steps to support the digitization of 1,000 titles - the initial step in making these titles market ready.
As we look to the future to face new challenges and seize opportunities for the audiovisual content industry in Canada, the CMF is pleased to play an active role in contributing to the growth of Canada’s digital economy.
We believe that Canadians should be proud of the ecosystem that exists in our country which stems from diverse sources of support and funding from the private sector in partnership with the provincial, territorial and municipal governments and the Government of Canada.
President and CEO