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Reed confirms physical Mipcom plan, with Netflix, WarnerMedia, BBC set to attend

Reed Midem has confirmed that Mipcom 2021 will take place as a physical event next month alongside a digital version, with Netflix, WarnerMedia and the BBC among the buyers attending in person.

Lucy Smith

Other commissioners planning to attend the Cannes market and conference, which was held digitally last year because of the pandemic, include Sky, StarzPlay, Nine Network, TF1 and ZDF.

Lucy Smith, director of Mipcom and MipTV for Reed Midem, told C21: “It’s impossible to give the exact number of buyers right now, but conversations are going very well and we’re very optimistic that we’ll have a very healthy number of buyers making it a good marketplace.”

Delegates are expected to travel to Mipcom from more than 50 countries, particularly those in Europe, where travelling to France is less complicated by coronavirus-related restrictions.

A signification portion of the attendees will come from France, the UK, Germany, Belgium, Spain, Poland and Ukraine, Smith said.

“There are also lots of companies from the US and Canada that are planning on attending, so those territories will be significantly well represented. There are other territories where it’s a bit more complicated at the moment, but they’re still hoping to find a way to come. For example, we’re working very closely with our Russian clients to see if we can help them with any paperwork they may need to attend,” she added.

At this year’s Mipcom, there will be around 150 stands from companies including A+E Networks, StudioCanal, Lionsgate, AMC Studios, France Télévisions and Eccho Rights.

While the layout of the stands will remain the same as previous years, social distancing will be in place and reception desks will be fronted by plexiglass.

They will be based in the “airy” Riveria 7 and the upper floors of the Palais des Festival, while the -1 level of the Palais, affectionately known as The Bunker, will be closed.

Smith added that companies not wanting to design and create a new stand can instead order one through Reed Midem’s local suppliers.

Meanwhile, Smith said Reed Midem was “doing as much as we can” to maintain Mipcom’s flagship events. They include the Women in Global Entertainment Lunch and an opening-night party, both of which will take place as physical events.

Mipcom has already lined up Channel 4 CEO Alex Mahon, Global Citizen co-founder and CEO Hugh Evans and WeMake founder and CEO Bouchra Rejani as keynote speakers.

“A big priority is to help content communities to connect, and that is part of our programme,” Smith said. For example, for the drama community, we’re working on a couple of events and masterclasses with Entertainment Masterclass. We’re also doing a similar programme for the formats community where we’re working with Frapa.”

To ensure a Covid-safe event, a raft of measures have been introduced for Mipcom, including enhanced cleaning, mandatory mask-wearing indoors and social distancing.

Delegates will also need to provide a health pass that proves a full course of vaccination or a negative test within the past 72 hours, or proof of recovery from the virus within the last six months,  to enter the event. Testing will also be available on site.

To avoid queuing, delegates will be able to print their badges at home rather than collecting them from registration areas.

“All of the feedback we are having with our clients is that the industry definitely needs physical meetings and the opportunity to meet in person,” Smith said.

“Zoom and Teams have been fantastic, and kept everyone’s business going, but nothing replaces the power of face to face. Plus, there’s the serendipity of those chance meetings that can become so much more, which is what Cannes is known for.”

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