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A new cluster initiative based at AIC, Sophia Antipolis

ADMC Launches with international workshop (click here for details)

A digital media revolution is on its way. The digitalization of content, the development of new digital platforms and the explosion of data transfer capacity will bring along a new world of applications and needs. The gap between the technology and competences needed to produce and distribute content for a personal terminal or for a 1,000 seats movie theater is becoming less and less significant.

These new opportunities have not been sufficiently assessed to date and a real comprehension of the market has still to be achieved in order to develop the successful new multiplatform features and services.

The Antipolis Digital Media Cluster (ADMC) is starting an initiative to bring together all actors involved in the digital media:
• Platform operators and manufacturers and software companies faced with the challenge of developing content offers and platform solutions corresponding to customer needs and technical capacities
• Content providers faced with the challenge of producing contents for the different platforms matching customer needs and capable of generating revenue
• Regulatory, institutional and training players faced with the challenge of defining the frame and promoting the development of this new industry
• Companies providing services and technical solutions connected to these three categories of players.

ADMC will provide its member companies with a strategic standpoint at the crossroads of development, marketing and sales. Member companies will be able to syndicate equipment, projects, competences and capacities to:
• test new contents, applications and services to assess the expectations and needs of users for the different platforms;
• develop and validate standards for contents, applications and services for the various platforms;
• Showcase and communicate on their offer on site using ADMC international promotion as well as during all major festivals and trade shows of Cannes, Nice and Monaco.

ADMC will be based at the Antipolis Innovation Campus (AIC) in Sophia Antipolis. This business resort will provide the ADMC with:
• tools and procedures to promote cooperation between all cluster members;
• State-of-the-art technical, working and living infrastructures to develop solutions for multiplatform digital media.

Companies entering ADMC are joining into:
• a place of creation and development of multiplatform digital content and solutions of unparalleled diversity and excellence in the world;
• a thought-through structure designed to foster co-operation and exchanges between members, the syndication of capacities, access to financing, to European sponsored projects and to potential clients.

A workshop with potential members will take place in Sophia-Antipolis on Tuesday, February 1st, 2005 to evaluate these prospects companies level of interest.
Presentation of the ADMC cluster at AIC

A place to meet the challenges of the future
Only 15 minutes away from Cannes, the centre of gravity of the entertainment industry in Europe, Antipolis Innovation Campus (AIC) is developing a business cluster with the ambition of becoming a world-class centre for digital media convergence and new digital content: the ADMC Cluster.

At the heart of Europe’s foremost science and technology park
Created in the 1960’s on a 2,300 hectares (6,700 acres) estate, 20 kilometres North-East of Cannes, the Sophia Antipolis science and technology park gained international recognition as the French “Sun Belt” with the success of today well-established companies like the airline reservation system house Amadeus and as the European home for global players like IBM or Texas Instruments. Today, with more than 1,250 companies, training and research institutes, Sophia Antipolis is a site of excellence for information technology, life sciences, environmental sciences and fine chemistry with exports worth EUR21b (USD25b) in 2003.

A high end business resort
Situated at the heart of Sophia Antipolis, on a four-hectare (450,000 sq ft) real estate with pine trees, the AIC is a fully equipped business resort combining the most innovative technology with a high end working environment and the best quality of life.

The whole site will have state-of-the-art technology facilities including:
• high-end connectivity with fibre directly in the buildings with 65 Mbps up to 155 Mbps capacity (upgrade possible up to 2,4 Giga bps);
• broadband secure Wifi access on the whole resort;
• hosting capacities of more than 100 servers.

The main building is 6,320 m² (68,000 sq ft) and includes working, event and leisure infrastructures:
• Private offices
• 1 modular showroom of 800 m² (8,600 sq ft)
• 1 fully equipped conference hall for events, conferences and screenings of 600 m² (6, 600 sq ft)
• 5 smaller conference rooms fully equipped
• An entertainment and leisure centre with 2 restaurants, 1 swimming pool, 1 fitness club (pool & club, summer 2005).

A corporate village is currently being built on the 7,000 m² (75.350 sq ft) constructible surface left on the estate. It will include:
• several corporate villas of 300 m² (3,230 sq ft) to host a single company or to be divided in small offices for several companies;
• a business hotel including several business flats.

Two cluster initiatives to assess the challenges of media convergence and new digital content
Apart from the ADMC cluster, another cluster focused on telecom and technology with a specific angle around triple play services (telephone + data + TV on the same XDSL line) is being created.
The vicinity of both clusters will help member companies syndicate capacities and develop synergies to lead the way to the applications and services – and eventually markets – of digital content for multiplatforms.

The ADMC cluster:
A new market is emerging out of the convergence of media and the development of new digital platforms:
• E/D-cinema
• Terrestrial, cable and satellite digital TV
• UMTS mobile telephony
• Internet services and ADSL TV
• Video On Demand (VOD)
• Captive audience networks
• Out of home advertising
This market has for the time being not been assessed: When will D-Cinema really start? What are the needs and expectations of consumers of UMTS services or captive audience networks? Which new VOD platforms? What are the specificities of each platform, which should be kept in mind while producing or reformatting one piece of content to be broadcasted on various platforms?
Many players are already trying to position themselves in this emerging market but the expectations have not been met to date.

The opportunity
Reassess content production for each platform
Great opportunities are emerging for companies to take strong positions on both B2B2C and B2C market segments. In the B2B2C segment, companies wanting to bring comprehensive offers to the consumer are still looking for providers to develop with or for them reliable and cost effective solutions. In the B2C segment, the first offers for VOD or UMTS services are being created. The question of what contents will be provided over these new platforms has not been answered yet.
To meet this challenge, it is necessary to bring together the various players of this market and work on the specific phases of the value chain of content production that need to be reassessed for each platform.
Promote and market one-stop solutions
Furthermore, sales and marketing of stand-alone technological solutions is a hard task. Indeed, if companies stay focussed solely on their own product, clients tend to have difficulties in understanding the whole potential of multiplatform content. To bring about the experience of multiplatform content, it is a must to be able to showcase one’s solution in combination with the many features and technologies involved in achieving the full experience – i.e. transmission, platform, content, etc.

The vision
Multiplatform features and services are yet to be developed and a real comprehension of the market has to be achieved. The Antipolis Digital Media Cluster (ADMC) will provide its member companies with a strategic standpoint at the crossing of development, marketing and sales.

The vision behind ADMC is to use synergies and complementarities between the various companies within the cluster and to implement these on a site combining the best showcase capacities and a strategic situation capable of attracting potential buyers.

ADMC will implement innovating business practices offering real added value to companies involved in the emerging, innovative and constantly evolving market of multiplatform technology, contents and services.

By joining in ADMC, companies will have the possibility to better understand the specificities of this new market and to develop coherent strategies and offering. Furthermore, they will be provided with effective sales and marketing tools to demonstrate their competence to provide solutions and bring them to the market.

The stakeholders
ADMC is opened to European and non-European. According to figure 2.4 on digital content elaboration and processing, four categories of players will take part in the cluster.

Platform operators and manufacturers
Platform operators:
• Mobile networks like Orange, France Telecom or SFR
• Digital cinema networks like UCI European digital network or Avica
• TV distribution networks for digital, terrestrial digital, cable, satellite or ADSL television
• Outdoor advertising networks like JC Decaux
• Captive audience networks like those of banks, pharmacies or airports
• Internet services providers (ISP) and VOD platform operators like neuf telecom, Wanadoo or T-Online
• Operators of any further platform where digital content can be broadcasted

Platform Manufacturers:
• IT/Computer hardware manufacturers like Panasonic or Hewlett Packard
• CD/DVD/Video player and recorder manufacturer like Sony or Samsung
• Mobile phone and IP phone manufacturers like Nokia or Alcatel
• Connected car manufacturers like Citroën or BMW
• Manufacturers of any further platform where digital content can be broadcasted

Software Companies:
• For all platform and content applications like Real or Microsoft.

Stakeholders’ benefit:
• Testing and certification in terms of audience and quality for their new content offering and services, for content creation and acquisition, as well as for the implementation of new technical features
• Development and consulting for new contents features and strategies
• Showroom for new content services: Back office during all major Cannes, Nice and Monaco festivals & trade shows as well as permanent showroom for B2B2C purpose
• Home base for the launch of big communication campaigns during the festival and trade shows to demonstrate their ability to provide new content services

Content providers
Companies producing and/or selling content for the various platforms:
• Mobile services like Jamba
• D-cinema like the Hollywood majors)
• Digital TV broadcaster like Canal Satellite
• Production companies for entertainment as well as business contents
• Advertising agencies
• A virtual community young creative professionals
• Companies specialized in post-production or formatting for the various platforms
• Other (?) content producers or aggregators

Stakeholders’ benefit:
• Development phase:
o Test and validation of ideas for the various platforms
o Creative and technical input, development of the entire potential of their ideas like (product placement, special features, etc.)
• Post-Production phase:
o Post-production for the various platforms
o Specific expertise to coordinate post-production, to work on specific parts of post-production and/or on post-production for specific content platform
• Distribution/Broadcasting phase:
o Certification of content for the various platforms
o Opportunity to present the quality of the produced content through cooperation with operators in the showroom or during special events in Cannes or Monaco
o Direct contact with platform operators to market production

Regulatory, institutional and training players
Administrations involved in the promotion or sustaining the industry on a:
• local and regional level like the Conseil Regional PACA,
• national level like the co-production treaties between countries,
• or European level like the European Commission.

Regulatory and certificatory institutions both:
• public like the Conseil Supérieur de l’Audiovisuel (CSA)
• and private like Digital Cinema Initiatives (DCI), ETC or MPEG4 Forum

Educational institutions:
• Professional training
• Art schools like EICAR, ESRA or ACT
• Business schools like Ceram, Théseus or EDHEC

Stakeholders’ benefit:
• Being in contact with most of the players of this emerging market and being able to react to its evolutions and validate the regulations
• Having the chance to learn about and work on the new technologies and features of multiplatform digital content

Companies providing services and technical solutions
Companies providing services and technical solutions connected to the activity of the three categories of players listed above.

Marketing and Advertising Services:
• Advertising agencies like Havas
• Direct Marketing companies like Wanadoo Data
• Media planning companies
• Product Placement companies
• Event Management companies creating special promotion and communication events at ADMC and outside
• Any company giving input to content production, promotion, and sales

Trend and Validation Services:
• Think tanks like Forrester Research
• Audience Measuring institutes like Mediamétrie
• Market Study institutes (for concept testing on audience, etc.) like GFK or Nielsen
• Professional Media like The Hollywood Reporter, Screen or Cagan
• Any further company involved in prospective research and validating that contents fit the needs and expectations of users of multiplatform services

Financial and Legal Services:
• Legal Services
• Consulting companies
• Banks
• Any company involved in the financing, (co-)producing and selling of digital content

Technical Services:
• Digital Rights Management (DRM) companies like Viaccess
• Network Security
• Billing
• Testing and certification companies (testing of new multiplatform features)
• Quality of Service (Quality testing and certification for broadcasting…)
• Any company involved in the technical aspects of multiplatform digital content

Stakeholders’ benefit:
• Offering their services to other members of the cluster and to companies coming to the cluster for specific issues of their content production or distribution
• Developing specific consultancy and services for all the players of multiplatform digital content
• Advantage of the location for the test and validation of audience (the region between Cannes, Sophia Antipolis and Grasse with 100.000 inhabitants has a very interesting mix with many nationalities, lots of engineers, young people as well as old people).

The benefits
ADMC will be the place for the much needed testing and analysis of contents to meet the needs of users of the new digital multiplatform media and learn more about their expectations.
Through the synergies between platforms and contents, ADMC will be a place for unpaired B2B2C sales potentials:
• Constant trade show with recurrent trade events
• Back-office for the various events in Cannes, Nice and Monaco

ADMC will achieve:
• Constant flow of potential clients for the members of the cluster (synergies between the members)
• Presence on the various events of Cannes, Nice and Monaco providing international awareness
• Potential for unpaired synergies in test, development, certification, demonstration and sale of multiplatform solutions and content
• Large international promotion for the members and their new initiatives

ADMC will test, develop and showcase one-stop solutions making the tremendous potentialities of multiplatform features and services come to life.

It will help the players in the new market of multiplatform content production and broadcasting to find the right match for content, platform and audience.


Service offer
The business resort AIC will offer companies on the cluster a range of high-end services and business resort premium services.

Business Resort Premium Services
• Business facilities (offerings range from company domiciliation, basic connected office, upgradable hosting solutions, Company Guest House, business hotel room special rates…)
• Technical facilities: broadband, Optic fibre, hosting and server capacities
• Business services: catering, event management team, hotel, cleaning at preferred rates
• French Riviera quality of life: Swimming pool, restaurants, fitness, pine tree forest geared to spectacular events hosting and creativity nurturing,
• Integrative structure with two clusters (telecommunication and multiplatform)

High-End Services
• Virtual cluster membership (annual fee to cooperate with the cluster, access information and discounts on events)
• Showcase facilities: 1 showroom, 1 conference hall, several conference rooms
• Sales & Marketing exclusive benefits:
o Showcase exhibiting facility at the Cannes Business Hot Spots during the major media events (Cannes Market, IDIFF, MIP) with transfer to the AIC for more developed product/service presentations
o Scouting for call for proposals interesting for the cluster through ADMC advertisements, business networks and proprietary media (website, newsletter…)
o Communication (ad, publicity and pr) on the cluster, it’s members ,their products and services
o Organisation of yearly events (panels, showcases…) on the AIC to promote member companies: invitation quotas, keynote and privileged sponsorship opportunities
• Cooperation platform:
o Inter/extra/intranet tool for internal coordination and communication, for the presentation of the members’ competences and for the centralisation of information and call for proposals
o Legal and administrative support capable of steering the development of synergies within the cluster
o Broader network of companies with specific corporate services like media financing, legal issues, etc.
o PR service reserved for members offering access to filmfestivals and ADMC database of media journalists worldwide (9,000)
• European Business Centre:
o Connected structure working on the institutional level (local, regional, European) to promote the companies of the cluster and implement joint lobbying initiatives (participation to the European Network of Business Centres)
o Skilled force to coordinate and work on major European and regional grants or call for proposals
o Capacity to raise private funds for members projects from VC and private investors within ADMC members
• TV station and production of programmes:
o Capability to broadcast (quoi?) to digital TV networks world wide ?? comment: satellite feed + Internet MPEG 2?
o Production of programmes promoting the competences of the cluster and communicating on its innovation strength.


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Chatelin Bruno
(Filmfestivals.com)

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