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Indielab seeks applicants for 2021 scheme

Indielab, the accelerator scheme for UK-based independent producers, has called for applications for its 2021 programme.

Victoria Powell

Founded in 2015 by producer Victoria Powell, Indielab provides early and mid-stage production companies with a programme that enables them to hone their business vision and explore the growth opportunities specific to their businesses.

The annual scheme selects 15 indies to take part in masterclasses with leading industry experts and consultants, and provides bespoke seminars and mentoring.

This year’s programme will comprise both virtual and physical events, after moving online in 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Wayne Garvie, president of Sony Pictures Television, will make the keynote opening speech.

As in previous years, Indielab’s 2021 cohort will be balanced across scripted and unscripted producers, male- and female-owned businesses and a minimum of 50% of the cohort will be based in the UK’s nations and regions, in line with the programme’s mission to help nurture diversity and sustainable production hubs outside of London.

To be eligible to apply, indies must be founded and registered in the UK, with less than £6m (US$8.1m) revenue in unscripted or £10m in scripted. Participants must have had at least two or three broadcast credits within the past three years.

Through last year’s scheme, Indielab helped facilitate first-look deals for Afro Mic and Chatterbox, along with investment for Yeti and both investment and first-look deals for Proper Content.

Powell said: “‘Last year has forced us all to innovate and consider how we do things differently. Indies need to adapt and identify their unique opportunity in the domestic and global markets. Times of rapid change and crisis can be a huge challenge and threat to existing revenue, but for those thinking strategically they can also present new and lucrative opportunities.

“Indies on the 2021 programme will have the opportunity to sharpen their focus and accelerate their growth with our bespoke seminars, masterclasses and mentoring. For 2021, we are delivering our programme virtually and physically, and an upside to virtual delivery is that we can field leading industry speakers from around the world; location is no longer a hurdle.”

Indielab 2021 runs in partnership with Indigo Talent, Screen Scotland, Channel 4 and the BBC.

Sponsors include Sony Pictures Television, which will continue to provide The Sony Indielab Diversity Bursary Scheme, content provider Getty Images, global distributor Banijay Rights, law firm Harbottle & Lewis and accounting and tax consultants Ecovis Wingrave Yeats and Nyman Libson Paul.

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