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Asia Video Summit wraps up a week of events

The Asia Video Industry Association (AVIA) ended off the year with a series of virtual conferences attended by over 1600 delegates across Asia Pacific, and its first in-person industry conference and dinner in over two years, Resilience 100, at the Grand Hyatt Singapore.

The Asia Video Summit which was supported by Create Hong Kong of the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region as the Lead Sponsor, was honoured to have Mr. Edward Yau, GBS, JP, Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region open the Summit this year. In his opening address, Yau reiterated Hong Kong’s position as a regional hub for uplinking satellite TV services and the Government’s commitment to the long-term development of the creative industries, promoting Hong Kong as Asia’s creative capital. “We look forward to working closely with the industry to ensure its sustained development,” said Yau.

With Asia accounting for 47% of global streaming subscriptions, it is clearly a very significant market, with influence way beyond its borders. The streaming market in Asia is bigger than that of the US, Western and Central Europe put together, with the top 15 Asian streamers boasting over 520 million subscriptions by the end of 2020, reported Guy Bisson, Executive Director and Co-Founder, Ampere Analysis. Ownership of IP has thus become a key battleground for streamers. Commissioning trends are increasingly driven by streaming platforms and having a local voice with international audiences in mind is now an important part of the mix.

Being local is exactly what has set Viu apart from other streamers being based out of Asia, said Felix To, Chief of Viu Original, PCCW Media. This commitment to the region has paid off, with Viu currently Southeast Asia’s second largest streaming service by paid subscribers. Summing up the conversation with To on What’s Next for Viu and the Future of Local Storytelling, Celeste Campbell-Pitt said, “There can be no doubt that an increased focus on original content production that brings together Asian onscreen and offscreen talent to tell Asian stories is the way forward.

“This focus on content, and the consumers, continued to drive a lot of the discussions at the Summit. Avinash Kaul, CEO, Network18, Managing Director, A+E Networks, TV18, shared that the digital ecosystem has democratized content production and dissemination. Echoing similar sentiments, Euan Smith, Group COO and CEO, TV, Astro, said, “We want to be transmission agnostic . . . technology agnostic. Our job is to put whatever content the consumers want to watch in front of them, in the simplest way possible.”

The consumers of today are no longer just on TV. With OTT and CTV consumption growing globally, subscription video viewers in APAC are expected to hit 1 billion in 2021, and marketers are tapping into this opportunity by accelerating their spend from linear TV to video streaming. “OTT brings the best of TV and digital programmatic. . . in terms of being able to effectively target and optimize,” said Gavin Buxton, MD Asia, Magnite.

And as technology evolves, the media industry continues to be transformed for consumers. However, the industry needs to find what is most relevant to the end users. “We need to put the consumers at the heart of the . . . decision making. . . there is still a lot to be done about creating true relevancy for the consumers so that the consumers stay on the platform,” added Stéphane Le Dreau, SVP, Regional General Manager APAC, NAGRA.

Closing off the Summit on What’s Next for Entertainment, Shad Hashmi, APAC Partner Lead, Media and Entertainment, Amazon Web Services, commented, “When you enrich the customer experience, . . . this is the broadest use of convergence.” Relevance in a world of choice, based on data, is key. And throughout the conference, the message was clear. It is the era of convenience for the consumers as platforms, and experiences, converge with digital acceleration.

The Asia Video Summit is proudly brought to you by Lead Sponsor Create Hong Kong (CreateHK) of the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, Gold Sponsors Bitmovin, Brightcove, Discovery, Gracenote, InMobi, iWedia, TV5MONDE, Viaccess-Orca, Viu, WarnerMedia, Xandr, YouTube Silver Sponsors AsiaSat, Baker McKenzie, BBC Studios, Broadpeak, Dolby, Intelsat, InvestHK, INVIDI, Irdeto, JW Player, Limelight, Magnite, MEASAT, MediaKind, Netflix, PubMatic, SES, SmartLabs, Synamedia, Zixi. BCS Bureau

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