Industry News

Why Fox and Disney hate Singapore’s little black boxes

Singapore has become the front line in a global fight against rampant piracy of movies, TV shows and sports games.

Major media and entertainment companies are waging a campaign against the spread of small black boxes that can provide free access to thousands of TV and video-on-demand channels worldwide.

“It’s the little box that took over piracy and it’s taking over the world,” said Neil Gane, general manager of the Coalition Against Piracy, an industry group that includes Disney (DIS), 21st Century Fox (FOX) and Turner, the parent company of CNN.

Gane said Southeast Asia has become “the epicenter” of the manufacturing and distribution of the boxes, which are known as illicit streaming devices, or ISDs.

On their own, the boxes don’t do much. But when loaded with the right software, they can enable people to illegally watch content they should be paying for, such as top soccer and NBA games, popular shows like Game of Thrones and the latest Hollywood movies.

The companies are fighting back and pushing authorities to crack down on the boxes.

Losing subscribers

In Singapore, cable operators Singtel and Starhub have teamed up with Fox and English soccer’s Premier League to take legal action against two ISD sellers. The case, which is now before the courts, could result in the devices being outlawed in the city-state.

Successful legal action has already been taken against sellers of the boxes in Hong Kong, Thailand, Malaysia and the United Kingdom, according to the Coalition Against Piracy. But it hasn’t been enough to stop the sale and use of them in many countries.

Last year, the US government made the boxes a special focus of its “notorious markets” report, warning that use of them has exploded in the United States. They’re different from products like Slingbox and Apple TV, which are set up to work with authorized content providers.

It’s difficult to put an exact number on the financial damage the illicit devices may be doing to the global media and entertainment industry. Losses for companies that create, own and distribute content for North America could exceed $4 billion a year, according to a recent report from communications technology firm Sandvine.

Research group Media Partners Asia says that in Singapore, the number of pay TV subscribers has fallen 15% over the past two years, mainly because of piracy. Its CEO, Vivek Couto, predicts the number of subscribers could fall another 15% in the next two years.

‘Everybody’s talking about the issue’

Jonathan Spink, the CEO of HBO in Asia, has worked in the region for 20 years and says content piracy has never been as widespread as it is today.

“Everybody’s talking about the issue now, which means everyone’s being impacted by it,” he said. “People are canceling subscriptions because they can get stuff for free. At the moment, it’s not killing the business but it’s beginning to have a very real effect on it.”

HBO, like CNN and Turner, is owned by Time Warner (TWX).

Spink said it’s hard to quantify how much illegal streaming devices are costing the company, but he points to the example of HBO’s Game of Thrones, which is the most pirated show in history. Episodes from its seventh season were pirated more than a billion times, according to anti-piracy firm Muso.

“Even if you can convert 10% of those people to paying customers, then business would be significantly better,” Spink said.

Easy to buy

One of the biggest problems is the abundant availability of the streaming boxes.

The devices are “the hot thing being sold” in many shopping malls devoted to tech products across Asia, Gane said.

In Singapore’s Sim Lim Square, an electronics mall, at least half a dozen outlets were openly offering the media streaming boxes last month. Several of them told CNN that the devices were selling well.

For the equivalent of $150, we bought a box that the store then loaded with software. After that, it’s basically plug and play. All that’s needed is a screen and an internet connection.

The device we bought provided access to the latest movies, TV shows and sports, including the English Premier League. It was all content we should be paying for, so we shut it down.

Stamping out the sale of the boxes is proving tough.

“I think most governments recognize the damage intellectual property crimes do to their economy, but they are not necessarily enforcing it or they are delaying the decisions to clamp down,” Gane said.

The industry needs to try to alter the way consumers think about piracy, according to HBO’s Spink.

“If you stole £100 through the internet from your bank, you would have the world falling on your shoulders. But if you steal a couple of films from someone, then no one seems to mind,” he said. “That mindset has to change.”

Stay resolute in fight to preserve C-band for FSS

WASHINGTON – Satellite service providers Intelsat and SES have announced an alignment on a proposal to the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC), which seeks to “protect the wide array of established satellite services in the 3700-4200MHz C-band downlink spectrum while opening a specified portion of that spectrum for terrestrial mobile use.”

The proposal, announced earlier this year, builds on an initial proposal put forth by Intelsat and Intel last October, and sets a commercial and technical framework that would enable wireless operators to quickly access approximately 100MHz of nationwide C-band downlink spectrum in the US, thus speeding the deployment of next-generation 5G services, said Intelsat and SES.

It is widely expected that by 2020 a number of 5G networks will be launched globally — and they will require more spectrum to operate in.

What this new proposal entails is the voluntary clearing of satellite users from the 3700-3800MHz in order to accommodate terrestrial mobile services, an APSCC spokesperson told APB. “Under this proposal, the remaining 3800-4200MHz of the C-band would be secured for satellite use, and fair compensation would be paid to the affected parties.

“This ensures that most of the standard C-band can still be used to support the thousands of US cable and broadcast channels being distributed via C-band satellites today.”

The proposals from Intel, Intelsat and SES are a respond to specific conditions in the US, highlights John Mederios, chief policy officer, CASBAA. These conditions, he explained, include huge geographic scope covered by a single regulator, and across temperate zones that predominately do not experience tropical rains.

“While other regulators will no doubt study the US model when it is fully implemented, it is not a template for solutions that could be imported to the rest of the world,” Mederios said. “More specifically, it is not a scheme that could be used successfully in the tropical zones of Asia-Pacific.”

In this region, C-band satellites continue to play an “irreplaceable role” in ensuring video distribution — and other essential services — to half a billion homes and businesses, he added.

APSCC members — including both Intelsat and SES — are unanimous in agreeing that the proposal is not appropriate outside of the US, and is not necessary or practical in Asia-Pacific, revealed the APSCC spokesperson.

“Rather, APSCC believes that this US-centric proposal is best understood as a good faith attempt to compromise, given the specific regulatory and market conditions in the US.”

At WRC-15, one of the key verdicts passed was to maintain C-band spectrum primarily for fixed-satellite service (FSS). As the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) prepares to re-convene for WRC-19 next October in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt, is there a case to be made for more spectrum to be allocated for the IMT industry?

Yes, said the APSCC, but not at the amount being asked for, and especially not in occupied satellite bands.

“We expect mobile consumption to grow — in fact, the satellite industry’s investment in current and next-generation high throughput satellites (HTS) is premised in part on that growth,” said the APSCC spokesperson. “However, some mobile industry estimates would have you believe that, very soon, the amount of mobile data consumed will be more than if every mobile user on Earth were watching 4K/Ultra HD (UHD) video for 16 hours a day. We do not think that is a realistic projection.”

There also remains an under-utilisation of spectrum already allocated to the IMT industry, further dismissing any need to displace satellite services in C-band to satisfy IMT spectrum requirements, said APSCC.

The WRC-19 agenda includes an examination of a wide range of new spectrum options in higher frequency bands whose use was “unimaginable” a few short years ago, but is now becoming technically and commercially feasible, said CASBAA’s Medeiros.

He continued: “Indeed, we view the future 5G ecosystem as one where satellites will play an integral role, providing telcos with the ability to roll out 5G across Asia’s many nations and diverse geographies, moving huge volumes of data to base stations — whether urban or remote — from which the telcos can deliver services to customers.”

However, there should be no doubt that C-band satellite services remain vital in reaching out to large populations in Asia-Pacific, where mobile networks simply do not exist, or are currently underdeveloped, Medeiros emphasised.

“We urge governments in Asia to focus on sustaining services to those populations too while working together to find different frequencies — outside those used by satellites — to help expand video delivery to urban consumers over 5G networks.”

Having confirmed the importance of C-band spectrum for satellite at WRC-15, governments and regulators need to remain resolute and fight to retain that spectrum for satellite, and avoid any new IMT identifications, especially in Asia-Pacific, said APSCC.

About half of the world’s satellite cellular backhaul sites are located in Asia-Pacific, and most of them are using C-band spectrum, the APSCC spokesperson pointed out. He also highlighted how C-band is used throughout the region not just for broadcasting, but also to bridge the digital divide by extending the reach of mobile networks to even the most rural and remote locations.

“It would be foolish to cannibalise this vital backhaul spectrum just so those already with broadband can get more broadband.”

Asia-Pacific represents a “radically different” spectrum market than is found in the US or Europe, in which frequencies above C-band are dominant.

What does not broach argument is how satellite and terrestrial mobile cannot use the same frequency at the same time, without satellite being “silenced”, cautioned Robert Bell, executive director of the World Teleport Association (WTA).

He notes that because of dense population centres and the presence of heavy rainfall in Asia-Pacific, C-band will continue to be crucial for lifeline telephony, broadband access, TV and radio distribution, as well as disaster response.

Sounding a warning bell to regulators, he cautioned: “Any effort to simply open satellite bands to terrestrial use will produce major service interruptions in a region where C-band is indispensable.

“I would expect satellite operators, telcos and national governments to continue a strong defence of their exclusive right to spectrum at WRC-19.”


AMSTERDAM, 12 January 2018 – A crime group suspected of hosting a large–‐scale illegal IPTV streaming business has been shut down, following a collaborative investigation led by the Cypriot Police, with the support of the Cybercrime Division of the Greek police, the Dutch Fiscal Information and Investigation Service (FIOD), the Cybercrime unit of the Bulgarian police and Europol, as well as members of the Audiovisual Anti–‐Piracy Alliance (AAPA). The network is accused of illicitly Distributing Greek, Cypriot and foreign pay TV subscriber channels. These services were allegedly offered through retailers throughout Europe and sold as a monthly illegal subscription for as little as 20 Euros.

Following coordination of the investigations of the Greek and Cypriot police authorities, raids were conducted in Cyprus, Greece, and Bulgaria during which 17 house searches took place, four suspects were arrested and servers used to provide illegal access to the channels were shut down. The investigation also uncovered installed machine sites that work with the central server to relay subscriber channels. The raids involved cooperation with local police authorities and were supported by Europol and AAPA members Irdeto, the world leader in digital platform security, and Nova, a leading provider of home entertainment services in Greece, with Irdeto providing technical and forensic expertise. Europol supported the involved countries since the start of the investigations with criminal analysis and coordination. It Also provided on–‐the–‐spot support during the raids with operational tools such as the Europol mobil office.

“These raids, conducted by local police authorities in collaboration with Europol and our members, show the importance that law enforcement is placing on the issue of IP infringement and represent another step forward in our mission to fight piracy,” said Sheila Cassells, Executive Director, AAPA. “AAPA members like Irdeto and Nova are at the forefront of this fight against piracy and we will continue to take measures to support enforcement activities and push for effective and consistent legislation to aid this.”

“Streaming piracy is a growing problem affecting content owners, broadcasters and operators in Europe and across the world, and the enforcement activities conducted by organizations like Europol and the collaborative police organizations show the seriousness of this crime,” added Mark Mulready, Vice President – Cybersecurity Services, Irdeto and Vice President, AAPA. “We are closely aligned with the mission of the AAPA and will continue to work closely with and support our customers, partners and law enforcement agencies to detect, analyze, investigate and counter all types of piracy.”

About AAPA
AAPA represents companies involved in the provision of protected audiovisual services, security technology for such services, and the manufacturing of products which facilitate the delivery of such services. AAPA’s mission is to enable the fight against piracy where this involves the development, promotion, distribution, application or use of technologies resulting in the unauthorized use of protected audiovisual content, by co–‐ordinating intelligence and action supported by effective legislation and its implementation. For more information about AAPA’s work visit

About Irdeto
Irdeto is the world leader in digital platform security, protecting platforms and applications for media & entertainment, connected transport and IoT connected industries. Our solutions and services enable customers to protect their revenue, create new offerings and fight cybercrime. With nearly 50 years of expertise in security, Irdeto’s software security technology and cyber services protect over 5 billion devices and applications for some of the world’s best–‐known brands. Our unique heritage as a subsidiary of multinational media group Naspers (JSE: NPN) means that we are a well–‐established and reliable partner to help build a more secure future. Please visit Irdeto at

For further information, please contact:
Sheila Cassells:
+44 7500 243 136

Miranda Rock
+44 7957 391 498
Rocket Launch for AAPA

Jon White
EMEA Manager, Public Relations, Irdeto
+44 (0)7384 234942

Averna Announces Partnership with MaxEye Technologies to Market Digital Video & Audio Toolkits for Infotainment Testing

Averna’s AST-1000 Now Offers Radio, Navigation and Video Testing in One Platform

MONTREAL, QUEBEC, June 7, 2017 – (ACN Newswire) – Averna, a leading global Test & Quality Solutions provider, announced today a strategic partnership with MaxEye Technologies to distribute their digital video and audio signal generation toolkits. This partnership will allow Averna to add full digital video and audio testing capability to its Averna Signal Tester (AST-1000) RF Signal Source platform, in addition to its existing RF toolkits such as AM/FM, HD Radio and Sirius XM as well as full GNSS simulation.

The AST-1000 is the only all-in-one RF test solution on the market designed to cover all common radio, navigation, video and connectivity protocols for infotainment system manufacturers. Based on the NI VST and featuring Averna’s leading RF and test expertise, the software-defined AST-1000 now supports MaxEye’s DRM, ISDB-T, ATSC, DVB-T, CMMB, and DTMB digital video and audio toolkits. To learn more, visit

“We’re extremely happy to partner with MaxEye Technologies to add their digital video and audio testing capability to our AST-1000, an advanced solution for both the design validation and manufacturing of infotainment systems,” commented Jean-Levy Beaudoin, Vice-President, Platforms & Innovation, R&D for Averna. “The response from our customer base and the industry has been very positive and we look forward to adding even more capabilities to our future-proofed infotainment platform.”

“We’re very excited about our partnership with Averna and this enables us to provide complete infotainment test solution for design, system level validation and manufacturing test using the only all-in-one RF test Solution AST-1000 in India,” commented Ramesh Krishnan, Director, MaxEye Technologies. “We have received very good response from our customers in the automotive industry and the local support they can get in India with this next generation infotainment test solution. Together with Averna we look forward to address the continuously evolving requirements of the automotive infotainment test.”

Pricing and Availability

The Averna AST-1000 platform and toolkits are available to customers worldwide. Detailed pricing and product information is available on request. Please contact or visit the AST-1000 product page.

Click to Tweet: From @Avernatech: Averna partners with MaxEye to market digital video & audio toolkits for #infotainment –

About Averna

As a global Test & Quality Solution leader, Averna partners with product designers, developers and OEMs to help them achieve higher product quality, accelerate time to market and protect their brands. Founded in 1999, Averna offers specialized expertise and innovative test, vision inspection, precision assembly and automated solutions that deliver substantial technical, financial and market benefits for clients in the aerospace, automotive, consumer, defense, life sciences, semiconductor, telecom and other industries. Averna has offices around the world, numerous industry certifications such as ISO, CSIA, and ITAR registration, and is partnered with National Instruments, Keysight Technologies and JOT Automation.

About MaxEye

We are a Test and Measurement company, specialized in providing turnkey solutions, products and consulting services. Founded in 2011, Silver Alliance Partner of National Instruments, we have strong expertise in providing automotive infotainment test, ATE Development, RF test and measurement. MaxEye Technologies has six years of experience in providing automotive infotainment test solution for design, validation and production test. Our vision is to become global leader in test and measurement engineering by leveraging our knowledge in RF, Wireless, signal processing and test automation. We intend to do this by challenging the traditional techniques to test and measurement with technology innovations to achieve accurate repeatable measurements and reduce the test time and cost.

(c) Copyright 2017 Averna. All rights reserved. Information subject to change without notice. Averna is a trademark of Averna Technologies Inc.

National Instruments, NI, and NIWeek are trademarks of National Instruments. Other product and company names listed are trademarks of their respective companies.

Technical Information
Alex Pelland
Product Marketing Manager
T: +1 514-842-7577 x689

Media Contact
Isabelle Pilon
M: +1 514-814-8928
T: +1 514-842-7577 x421

Child Rights Award 2017: A call to broadcasters

1 April 2017, Kuala Lumpur/ Hong Kong/Bangkok/ – ABU, CASBAA and UNICEF are calling for entries for the 17th Asia-Pacific Child Rights Award from broadcasters and producers in the region.

Programmes both for children and about children are eligible and can cover any children’s rights issue. Entries can include documentaries that detail the plight of children, dramas that help break down stereotypes and discrimination, or animation that teaches and entertains.

Entries must have been broadcast between June 2016 and June 2017 and must be received by 30 June 2017.  The Award will be presented during the CASBAA Convention in Macau in early November 2017.

Eligible countries/territories: Afghanistan, Australia, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Brunei, Cambodia, China, Cook Islands, Fiji, French Polynesia, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kiribati, Republic of Korea, DPR Korea, Kyrgyzstan, Lao PDR, Macau, Malaysia, Maldives, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nauru, Nepal, New Zealand, Niue, Pakistan, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Samoa, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Tajikistan, Thailand , Timor-Leste,  Tonga, Turkmenistan, Tuvalu, Uzbekistan, Vanuatu and Viet Nam.
This competition is open to all ABU and CASBAA members in the Asia-Pacific region. A full list of countries can be found on the website.

To join the competition, please submit your entries) online at

Brochure of this year’s Award:

For more information, please visit or contact  Details on the Convention on the Rights of the Child can be found at


Note to editors:

Asia–Pacific Broadcasting Union (ABU)

ABU is a non-profit, non-government, professional association of broadcasting organizations, formed in 1964 to facilitate the development of broadcasting in the Asia–Pacific region. It provides a forum for promoting the collective interests of television and radio broadcasters and engages in activities to encourage regional and international cooperation between broadcasters. It currently has more than 260 members from 64 countries. It organizes activities and projects to promote excellence in broadcasting and to improve technical and programming skills of its members, including the ABU Children’s TV Programme Item Exchange.



CASBAA is the association for the multichannel audiovisual content creation and distribution industry across Asia.

The CASBAA mission is to promote industry growth in the region.  In so doing, it seeks to:

Represent: via government advocacy and interaction with trade organisations

Inform: via conferences, roundtables, newsletters & publications

Connect: via networking opportunities and informal gatherings


United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF)

UNICEF works in 190 countries and territories to protect the rights of every child. UNICEF has spent 70 years working to improve the lives of children and their families. Defending children’s rights throughout their lives requires a global presence, aiming to produce results and understand their effects.

UNICEF East Asia and Pacific:

UNICEF South Asia:


For further information, please contact:


Hanizah Hamzah                     ABU (Kuala Lumpur), + 603 22822480,


Cynthia Wong:                        CASBAA (Hong Kong), + 852 3929 1711,


Kritsada Jirathun:                    UNICEF (Bangkok), +66 2 356 92 49

  FILMART: Creating Quality Localized Content Attracts Audiences

Tapping into the huge market for OTT platform content
HONG KONG, Mar 15, 2017 – (ACN Newswire) – With the rapid advances in technology, people can tune into their favourite OTT platforms on different kinds of electronic devices anytime and anywhere. OTT refers to over-the-top distribution of multimedia content via the Internet. For online entertainment companies, the challenge is how to revise their strategies to adapt to rapid developments and high demand for such content. At the thematic seminar held yesterday (14 March), “New Opportunities in the Explosive Growth of Online Entertainment” at the Hong Kong International Film and TV Market (FILMART), representatives of four renowned online entertainment companies discussed how to tap into the tremendous OTT platform market by producing and sourcing quality localized content.

– User pays model is key to business development –

Yang Xianghua, Senior Vice President of iQIYI pinpointed the fast-growing audience for OTT platforms in the Chinese mainland over the past few years. “It is estimated that within this year or next year, the number of people who watch streaming videos using mobile phone networks will reach half of the country’s population. In view of this, iQIYI is actively working with our partners to produce high-quality full-length online films.” He mentioned that there are two revenue models in place at present; advertisement revenue and user fees. The number of videos that generated more than Rmb1 million in profit for the company surged from 35 in 2015 to 122 in 2016, which points to a huge online market.

Conference moderator Patrick Frater, Asia Editor of Variety, raised the question of how to tackle the issue of many online entertainment companies running at a loss. In his response, Mr Yang noted that iQIYI has invested a lot in purchasing and producing content. In order to attract audiences, a significant portion of the content is free in the early stages. However, he predicted that the platform will turn the deficit into profit, as the number of subscribers and page views increases and the pay-per-user model is established. “Young Chinese viewers are relatively affluent, so they are willing to pay for higher-quality content,” he added.

– Localized vision to meet demands of different markets –

Meg Lee, Assistant Vice President, Content Management – Digital Media, PCCW Media Limited summed up the current trend: “Korean content is king.” Therefore, ViuTV is closely following the Korean trends and actively sourcing quality Korean entertainment video content such as dramas and variety shows, which have attracted a large numbers of fans of Korean trends to follow the channel.

Regarding producing and sourcing content that caters to the tastes of local audiences, Ms Lee noted, “ViuTV has its own team in each country, as well as an independent team that is in charge of collecting audience data and analysis. We also work with different local companies so as to quickly grasp the demand of the local market.” She added that ViuTV has its own team of translators who translate related content into local languages in a timely fashion. “We can only stay at the forefront by seizing the opportunities from the fast-changing trends.”

– Diversified video content attracts wider audiences –

As audience tastes change quickly, companies need to constantly explore new initiatives and adjust their strategies, which results in high investment risks. Dan Zonmani, Content Business Director of LINE Company Thailand stated that LINE TV partners with various brands in co-productions of new online content, which in turns lowers investment risks. LINE TV also offers diversified video content. “Besides local content, we also feature content from Japan and Korea while refining our existing content to cater to the local audience’s taste.” In addition, LINE TV features re-runs of dramas and live broadcasts in a multi-pronged approach to attract audiences.

He added that in providing content that caters to Thailand’s market, it is essential for the company to understand and respect the local culture while taking risks. “For instance, at the passing of the King of Thailand, we purchased a three-hour film whose content revolves around songs that are written about the King of Thailand. Broadcasting such a lengthy film on LINE TV was a new attempt, and a worthy one.”

– Japanese video on demand platforms bloom –

Among various markets, Japan was one of the last to join the OTT platform revolution, since the country’s traditional entertainment culture remains strong and it is difficult for industry players to break into the Japanese market. Nakase Keiko, Director (Animation Division and New Business Development) of Mytheater DD stated that there will be a gradual increase in the number of Japanese audiences who watch videos on OTT platforms on mobile devices, and the market of VOD services platforms is expected to reach US$1.3 billion in value.

Despite the tremendous market potential, there are also various challenges for companies who wish to enter the market. For instance, while NETFLIX and Amazon produce original dramas for their VOD platforms in Japan, the companies face competition from traditional TV stations. Ms Nakase believed the companies must differentiate their programmes from traditional TV content. For instance, greater emphasis may be placed on star casting to arouse audience’s interest.

In conclusion, online entertainment companies must cater to the audience’s tastes, keep a firm grasp on market trends and provide quality, localized content to attract more viewers, in order to tap into this fast-changing and tremendous entertainment services market.

FILMART Website:
Photo Download:

Media representatives wishing to cover the event may register on-site with their business cards and/or media identification.

To view press releases in Chinese, please visit


Established in 1966, the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC) is a statutory body dedicated to creating opportunities for Hong Kong’s businesses. With more than 40 offices globally, including 13 on the Chinese mainland, the HKTDC promotes Hong Kong as a platform for doing business with China, Asia and the world. With 50 years of experience, the HKTDC organises international exhibitions, conferences and business missions to provide companies, particularly SMEs, with business opportunities on the mainland and in international markets, while providing information via trade publications, research reports and digital channels including the media room. For more information, please visit: Follow us on Google+, Twitter @hktdc, LinkedIn.



Communication and Public Affairs Department
Joe Kainz
Tel: +852 2584 4216


FILMART Draws Over 8,000 Global Visitors

Industry Leaders Discuss Trends, Development and Cooperation
HONG KONG, Mar 16, 2017 – (ACN Newswire) – The 21st Hong Kong International Film & TV Market (FILMART), organised by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC), ended today. The four-day event is a premier trading platform for the Asia’s entertainment industry. This year’s fair attracted more than 8,000 visitors, up nine per cent from last year.

Among the visitors who attended this year’s FILMART, participation from Asia rose significantly, with the Chinese mainland, Philippines and Cambodia recording double-digit growth.

This year’s FILMART featured the latest productions of more than 800 exhibitors from 35 countries and regions. Chinese mainland and many overseas exhibitors also set up booths to promote their local entertainment productions, including the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, the European Union, Korea, Japan, Singapore, the Philippines, India and Vietnam.

An ideal trading platform featuring global buyers and latest productions

FILMART has long been an important platform for local entertainment companies to release new productions and announce development strategies. This year’s FILMART featured more than 70 special events, including thematic seminars, press conferences and networking events. There were also some 40 world and international premieres. In addition to such film companies as Emperor Entertainment Group, Sun Entertainment Culture Ltd., Universe and Shaw Brothers announcing their latest projects, TVBI and Fantastic Television Ltd also unveiled the line-up of programmes.

FILMART is an important promotional platform and one that has facilitated numerous successful collaborations. Asian film and TV productions were the focus among international buyers this year. The Thai delegation promoted “Content Thailand” at this year’s FILMART and concluded more than 10 deals with companies from the US and Korea during the four-day exhibition. The delegation was pleased with the results and is considering expanding their participation next year. Chinese mainland exhibitor Zhejiang Dream Stardom Film and TV Culture Co. Ltd. has been taking part in FILMART for many years. At this year’s show, the company successfully sold the first and second seasons of a Chinese TV series to a buyer from Southeast Asia. With so many business opportunities, a Dream Stardom representative said they would be returning to the fair next year.

The Cambodia Film Commission also led a delegation of local entertainment companies to exhibit at FILMART. One of the companies, Kongchak Pictures, reached a deal with a Korean buyer for a film and also started negotiations with buyers from the US, Canada, Malaysia and Thailand.

Leading producers share insights

FILMART featured an extraordinary line-up of more than 70 speakers, including leading industry representatives from the film, digital entertainment, animation and other sectors to share their views and insights. A total of 12 seminars were organised or co-organised by HKTDC, attracting over 3,000 attendees.

Documentaries were one of the focus areas of this year’s FILMART. The audience raised many questions during the seminar titled “Opportunity for Documentaries in Asia”. Ruby Yang, winner of the Academy Award for Documentary (Short Subject), shared her experience at the seminar. She said buyers tend to prefer productions about universal subjects.

Also speaking at the seminar was Takahiro Hamano, Senior Producer (Content Development Center, Programming Department) of Japan’s NHK. He said pan-Asian collaboration projects are becoming common; and if the directors could capture promotion opportunities and present well-established stories, finding capital should not be too difficult.

Jeong Joong Kim, Director of Acquisition and Chief Producer from Korea’s KBS, emphasised the importance of local perspectives. He said Korean audiences favour international stories with a Korean view point.

Andrew Hevia, co-producer of the latest Academy Award winner for Best Picture Moonlight, also stressed the importance of identity. He said the success of Moonlight is its ability to tell a specific story for a specific audience, narrating the story in an unexpected but down-to-earth way and focusing on ideas.

The Digital Entertainment Summit shed light on movie content and visual effects. Speakers pointed out that special effects companies in Asia are already quite advanced in the techniques that they use, and therefore should place more attention on enhancing content. At the Digital Entertainment Summit, Genki Kawamura, producer of Confessions and the hit anime Your Name, said that he joined the film industry because he was inspired by Steven Spielberg’s E.T. He said the film’s successful use of visual, audio and story-telling elements also inspired his own productions.

Daniel Son, Head of VFX Division of Digitalidea, the post production company behind Korean productions Train To Busan and Goblin: The Lonely and Great God, said Chinese filmmakers are highly creative, and have a passion for fantastical works. They also possess advanced technical skills. Felix Xu, CEO, Illumina Technology said that low budgets motivated them to experiment with more technologies to cope with different challenges, enhance efficiency and reduce production time.

The Hong Kong International Film and TV Market (FILMART) is a founding event of Entertainment Expo, Hong Kong, and is among one of the expo’s 10 events. Entering its 13th edition, the expo is running from 13 March to 25 April and is featuring 10 spectacular events, including three founding events and seven core events. The three founding events are: the Hong Kong International Film and TV Market (FILMART), the Hong Kong International Film Festival (HKIFF) and the Hong Kong Film Awards Presentation Ceremony (HKFA); while the seven core events are: the Hong Kong-Asia Film Financing Forum (HAF), the Hong Kong Asian-Pop Music Festival (HKAMF), the IFPI Hong Kong Top Sales Music Award, ifva (Incubator for Film & Visual Media in Asia Festival), the Asian VFX and Digital Cinema Summit, the Digital Entertainment Summit and TV World International Forum.

FILMART website:
Entertainment Expo website:
Photo download:

To view press releases in Chinese, please visit


Established in 1966, the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC) is a statutory body dedicated to creating opportunities for Hong Kong’s businesses. With more than 40 offices globally, including 13 on the Chinese mainland, the HKTDC promotes Hong Kong as a platform for doing business with China, Asia and the world. With 50 years of experience, the HKTDC organises international exhibitions, conferences and business missions to provide companies, particularly SMEs, with business opportunities on the mainland and in international markets, while providing information via trade publications, research reports and digital channels including the media room. For more information, please visit: Follow us on Google+, Twitter @hktdc, LinkedIn.



Communication and Public Affairs Department
Joe Kainz
Tel: +852 2584 4216


Power-Players head to Mission Hills for Lesports Connects: The China Sports Forum

HONG KONG, 28 November 2016 – Global industry leaders and sporting personalities are coming together this week to discuss the future of the sports industry in the world’s most populous country when the inaugural LeSportsConnect: The China Sports Forum kicks off tomorrow in Dongguan, southern China.

Billed the definitive gateway to connect China’s new and emerging sports business power-players, LeSports Connects: The China Sports Forum’s list of delegates reads like a ‘who’s who’ of the sports industry, with a mix of administrators, brand owners, content creators, media, promoters, and sponsors making the trip to Mission Hills’ luxury Dongguan resort in the Pearl River region of China.

Notable speakers include WWE heiress and current Chief Brand Officer, Stephanie McMahon, former Manchester United and Chelsea F.C. Chief Executive Officer, Peter Kenyon, former England footballer and entrepreneur Rio Ferdinand, as well as senior representatives from brands and rights holders operating at the forefront of the industry, including Weibo Sports, NBA China, GoPro, Baofeng Sports, ONE Championship and Manchester United FC.

With China’s State General Administration of Sport recently announcing a five-year plan to grow the Chinese sport industry to three trillion yuan (US$460 billion) by the end of 2020, supported by an unprecedented acquisition and investment spree by Chinese companies, organisers are bracing themselves for a huge interest in the sector.

Ma Guoli, Vice Chairman of LeSports commented: “We’re proud to stage the inaugural LeSports Connects: The China Sports Forum in China. The forum will bring together some of the most recognized players in the international sports industry with business leaders from around the region. We look forward to two days of valuable discussion and insight, and to contributing to the future direction of sport in this country.”

Stephanie McMahon, Chief Brand Officer, WWE said: “WWE is looking forward to participating in LeSports Connects at Mission Hills, Dongguan in China this week. China represents one of the most significant growth opportunities that the international sport and entertainment industry has seen and we see the China Sports Forum as an excellent opportunity to better understand the brand behavior and consumer trends in China, that will help shape our future business strategy.”

LeSports Connects: The China Sports Forum runs from Monday 28 November to Wednesday 30 November at Mission Hills Dongguan, China. For the latest schedule see:  Follow the latest news and updates at:



Lesports Connects: The China Sports Forum – Speaker line up announced for first ever

Lesports Connects: The China Sports Forum – Speaker line up announced for first ever
第一屇LeSports Connects 中国体育论坛演讲者名单公布


  • LeSports Connects: The China Sports Forum, to be held at Mission Hills Dongguan from 28 – 30 November, announces speaker line up, including former England football star Rio Ferdinand, Chinese sports industry leaders from LeSports and Weibo Sports, WWE heiress Stephanie McMahon and former Manchester United and Chelsea FC CEO Peter Kenyon
  • A first of its kind event inviting leaders of the international and Chinese sports communities together under one roof – the 3-day invitation-only event aims to be the gateway to connect with China’s new sports business power players
  • Hosted at Mission Hills, China, the event consists of 2 days of conference content, and superior networking opportunities including Golf Day at the world’s largest golf course


  • LeSports Connects中国体育论坛日前宣布演讲者名单, 包括前英格兰足球明星里奥·费迪南德,来自乐视体育等公司的中国体育产业领袖, WWE高管Stephanie McMahon,前曼联和切尔西俱乐部首席执行官Peter Kenyon等
  • 国内外体育产业高管首次在中国汇聚一堂 , 活动邀请近400位嘉宾出席,旨在成为连接中国体育界的门户。
  • 本次活动将在中国观澜湖 举办,包括2天的的论坛会议以及在世界上最大的高尔夫球场进行的“高尔夫球日”,将为各界体育人士提供卓越的社交平台。


HONG KONG, 7th November 2016 中国东莞,2016年11月7日

LeSports, China’s leading Internet-based eco-sports company and Branded, the Hong Kong-based event marketing agency responsible for the highly successful YouTube FanFest and award winning ‘All That Matters’ conference series, today announced the speaker line up for their upcoming joint event LeSports Connects: The China Sports Forum.

作为中国领先的互联网的生态体育公司,乐视体育联手Branded在今天公布了LeSports Connects:中国体育论坛的演讲者名单。 Branded是来自香港的活动营销机构,其创立了YouTube FanFest以及屡获殊荣的“Matters”系列会议,

The 3-day invitation-only event is being held at event partner location Mission Hills, China – the world’s largest golf resort, from 28 – 30 November 2016. The event kicks off with a golf day for all delegates, followed by 2 days of conference content focusing on the rapidly growing China sports industry, with topics including:

为期3天的活动将在世界上最大的高尔夫度假村 – 中国观澜湖举行。活动将为所有代表开放一个高尔夫球日以及两天的会议内容,专注于讨论快速增长的中国体育产业,主题包括:


  1. The China sports industry and its influence on the international sports scene

– Showcase the domestic industry – current research and trends, and a look to the future

– Technology and media – updates on new forms of content distribution and fan engagement

– Chinese Super League – the business opportunities and the future of football in China

– Investing in international sports companies and services – what are investors looking for and how do you source China investment?


  1. The international sports industry turns to China

– Bringing international leagues, events and athletes to China

– Celebrating failure – what are some of the potential pitfalls and learnings

– International sponsorship and brand opportunities featuring case studies from top global brands

– Football Matters – what are the leading global clubs doing in China?



– 国内行业洞察 – 当前的调研和趋势、未来展望

– 科技和媒体 – 内容分发和粉丝参与的新形式

– 中国足球超级联赛 – 中国足球的商机和未来

– 投资国际体育公司和服务 – 投资者寻找什么,如何从中国获得投资?



– 将国际联赛,赛事和运动员带到中国

– 庆祝失败 – 什么是一些潜在的陷阱和从中吸取的教训

– 国际赞助和品牌的机会——来自全球顶级品牌的案例研究

– 足球事业 – 全球顶级俱乐部在中国做什么?


Speakers announced for the first LeSports Connects: The China Sports Forum include:

第一屇LeSports Connects:中国体育论坛演讲者名单包括:

Rio Ferdinand 里奥·费迪南德, former England professional footballer 前英格兰职业足球员

Lei Zhenjian 雷振剑, Founder & CEO 创始人 & CEO, LeSports 乐视体育

Ma Guoli 马国力, Vice Chairman 副董事长, LeSports 乐视体育

Tenniel Chu 朱鼎耀, Vice Chairman 副主席, Mission Hills Group 观澜湖集团

Hou Yuhua 侯昱华, CEO, Weisai Sports 微赛体育

Chen Xin 陈鑫, Vice President 副总裁, WeCapital 微影资本

Zhang Zhe 张喆, Senior Operations Director 高级运营总监, Weibo Sports 微博体育

Zhao Jun赵军, General Manager总经理CEO, China Sports Media 体奥动力

Li Sheng 李胜,Founder &CEO  创始人兼CEO, SECA World 盛力世家

Beatrice Lee, CEO, Baofeng Sports 暴风体育

Stephanie McMahon, Chief Brand Officer & TV Personality 首席品牌官 & 电视名人, WWE 世界摔角娱乐

Peter Kenyon, Partner 合伙人, Opto Advisors(体育产业咨询)

Andrea Radrizzani, President & Founder 总裁 & 创始人, Aser Media(投资公司)

Zhang Yi, Chief Editor 主编, Sohu Sports 搜狐体育

Liu Jianhong 刘建宏, Co-President 联席总裁, LeSports 乐视体育

Xie Chenguang 谢晨光, Founding Partner 创始合伙人, Kaixing Capital 凯兴资本

Shi Yiying 石一瑛, Director of Sports 体育频道总监, 界面

Pan Shijian 潘石坚, Founding Partner 创始合伙人, Kaixing Capital 凯兴资本

Zhang Yuqiang 张玉强, Co-founder 联合创始人, Sports Money 体育大生意

Han Mu 韩牧, Founder 创始人, Lanxiong Sports 懒熊体育

Richard Young, Managing Director 董事总经理, NFL China 美国国家橄榄球联盟(中国)

Chris Park, Senior Vice President 高级副总裁, Major League Baseball 美国职棒职业棒球大联盟

Victor Cui, CEO, ONE Championship ONE冠军赛(综合格斗促销)

Jamie Reigle, Commercial Director 商业总监, Manchester United 曼彻斯特联足球俱乐部

Xavier Asensi, Managing Director – APAC 亚太区董事总经理, Barcelona FC 巴塞罗那足球俱乐部

Fernando de Matos, Head of Sponsorships AP Region 亚太区赞助主管, Visa 维萨

Caroline Darcy, Head of Sponsorship, Asia Pacific 亚太区赞助主管, UBS 瑞银集团

Adrian Toy, Regional Director, Marketing 亚太区营销总监, PUMA 彪马

Josh Black, CEO, ESP Properties, Asia Pacific(体育娱乐营销代理)

Mickael Piantchenko, Asia Pacific Director 亚太区总监, ESL 电子竞技联盟

Tom Byer 汤姆拜尔, Head Technical Advisor 首席技术顾问, Chinese Ministry of Education 中华人民共和国教育部

Andrew Collins, CEO, Mailman Group

Michael Cunnah, Chairman 董事长, iSportConnect体育社交媒体

Catherine Gibbs, Head of Sponsorship 赞助主管, AIA 友邦保险

John Cappo, President 总裁 & CEO, AEG China 安舒茨管理

Ben Flint, CEO, Asian Sponsorship News (ASN)(亚洲赞助新闻)

Scarlett Li, Founder 创始人 & CEO, Zebra Media 热波传媒

Richard Welbirg, Senior Reporter 高级记者, TV Sports Markets体育媒体

with many more to be announced

Interested parties can register their interest in attending at the official website:


About LeSports

Established in 2014, LeSports has quickly become China’s leading internet sports company with a sports ecosystem which covers ‘content platform + event management and operations + smart hardware + internet services.’

With rights to over 300 global sporting events and live broadcasts totaling more than 16,000 games per year, including the English Premier League , LeSports houses the largest sports content in China. These also include exclusive rights in China to the Chinese Super League (CSL), Wimbledon, Formula 1 and much more.

LeSports acts an event operator and promoter, having helped bring world-renowned football tournament the International Champions Cup (ICC) to China for the past two years and will again next year.

The LeSports state-of-the-art, self-produced Smart Bike is the first item of hardware LeSports released and it has proven extremely popular among cycling and sports enthusiasts.

Internet services such as e-commerce and ticketing are provided by LeSports, where customers can purchase officially-licensed merchandise from top clubs and organizations through LeSports’ online platforms. Furthermore, LeSports acts as Major League Baseball’s (MLB) hard goods distributor in China, Hong Kong and Macao, and provides fans with the platform to purchase MLB merchandise in-game through the LeSports website and app.

This year, LeSports introduced its subscription and pay-per-view model, breaking down the barrier of traditional sports broadcasting in China with its OTT service, and pushed China’s paid sports content market into a new age. LeSports Pass members can watch all 380 Premier League matches live this season on LeSports’ OTT platform.

With its Hong Kong office up and running last year, LeSports HK has proved a real game-changer and instant success by introducing its popular OTT service into an already mature and competitive Pay TV market.  LeSports HK has also secured a whole host of exclusive rights to top-notch competitions such as the English Premier League, FA Cup, National Basketball Association (NBA) and the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia, as well as more than 2,500 matches from the Chinese Super League, the US Open Tennis Championships and many more. LeSports has started setting up a team based in the U.S, which is focusing on new technology and gaining a foothold in the ever-growing American sports market.

LeEco, the parent company of LeSports, has recently set up offices in the U.S, India, Russia and with LeSports focusing on its globalization strategy, will look to move into these territories in the near future.










About Branded

Branded are creators of ‘Live Media that Matters’

Branded conceptualised and produces the YouTube FanFest global tour, It’s A Girl Thing and the “Matters” series of B2B festivals.

Founded in 2002, and listed as a “Top 10 Event Marketing Agency” by Marketing Magazine and winner of the Singapore Experience Best Trade Event of the Year Award in 2012 and 2014, Branded adds value and grows the media, entertainment and sports industries in Asia.

Branded are experts in the conceptualisation, programming, organisation, and production of dynamic conferences, live music festivals, academies, and fan events in Asia. We are an independent company staffed by passionate multi-cultural, multi-lingual and multi-talented individuals with offices in Hong Kong and Singapore and affiliations that reach all corners of the world.

Branded是“Live Media that Matters”的创作者

Branded概念化并制作了全球巡演的YouTube FanFest,“It’s A Girl Thing”和“Matters”系列等B2B活動。

Branded成立于2002年,被Marketing Magazine列为“十大活动营销机构”,并于2012年和2014年获得新加坡体验最佳贸易活动奖,Branded為亚洲地区的媒体,娱乐和体育产业作出了很大的貢獻 。

Branded是概念化,规划,组织和生产商业会议,现场音乐节,学术讲座,粉丝活动的专家。 我们是一个独立的公司,拥有充满激情的多元文化,多语言和多才多艺的員工,在香港和新加坡设有办事处并拥有遍布世界各地的分支机构。


Website & social media links


Distributed on behalf of Branded by Roco Communications. For further enquiries please contact:

Ross Collett (Media) at

Louisa Berry (Sales/Media Partnerships enquiries) at

Krystyna Kosciuszko (Programme enquiries) at

Documentary on dangerous journey to school wins 2016 Asia-Pacific Child Rights Award for Television

GMA’s ‘Reel Time: Written on Water’, about the treacherous and difficult journey to school for students in a far flung area of the Philippines, wins 2016 Asia-Pacific Child Rights Award for Television

written on the Water
Click the photo to watch the winning documentary   ©GMA Network

Bali, 24 October 2016 – ‘Reel Time: Written on the Water’, produced and broadcast by GMA Network, has won the 2016 Asia-Pacific Child Rights Award. The programme highlights the dangerous trip to school for students who must wade through the sea and climb a mountain to go to school.

Every day, before sunrise, children in Matnog, Sorsogon, prepare for a hard trip to school. The fastest route requires them to walk across the sea while the tide is low and trek up a mountain. After the two-hour walk, despite exhaustion and hunger, they try their best to absorb their lessons. Sadly, after risking their lives on the way to school, the children are met with a shortage of classrooms and textbooks. Despite the odds, however, their determination to learn never wanes.

‘Reel Time: Written on the Water’ was praised by the jurors. “The show reflects the problems the children face,” they said. “It not only shows their difficult journey but also how this journey affects the educational development of the children.”

The Reel Time production team described positive feedback they received from viewers. “Weeks after its initial broadcast, some groups organized a fund drive and outreach project to send bags, books and other school supplies,” the team said. “Yellow Boat of Hope, through its donors, was able to build motorboats so that children can commute to school. The voters also selected new local leaders who they hope could really bring change and fulfill their promises of uplifting the kind of life they have right now.”

“The story relates to the modern-day realities in the lives of children not only in Asia but also in other parts of the world,” Dr Javad Mottaghi, ABU Secretary-General, said. “They are prepared and ready to overcome all obstacles to gain access to a much desired education – their key to success in the future. They are absolutely right.

Children wade through the sea to go to school
Children wade through the sea to go to school. ©GMA Network

“‘Written on the Water’ sends a clear message to the children’s parents, teachers, social groups, and other local and international organisations. This message is that sacrifice, determination and hard work starts at a very young age due to socio-economic conditions which the children are not responsible for. It’s our moral duty to help them by any means and pray for their future.”

“CASBAA congratulates GMA Network for their unflinching look at childhood poverty in ‘Reel Time: Written on the Water’,” said Christopher Slaughter, CEO of CASBAA. “Our industry reaches hundreds of millions of people around the world daily. It is heartening to see our medium being leveraged as a platform not just for entertainment, but in the service of such a worthy cause as alleviating the plight of children in need. On behalf of the industry, CASBAA salutes the on-going participation of broadcasters from across the Asia Pacific region in this year’s Award process.”
For the first time, UNICEF will also award a special UNICEF Regional Director’s Award for TV to ‘101 East’s ‘Too Young to Wed’, produced by Al Jazeera. The award will be presented at the High Level Meeting on South-South Cooperation for Child Rights in Asia and the Pacific in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in November.

“‘Too Young to Wed’ highlights the important issue of child marriage throughout the region. This issue is an important one for UNICEF; it’s about young girls losing their childhood,” said Karin Hulshof, the UNICEF Regional Director for East Asia and the Pacific. “Young Beezly’s heartbreaking story is still all too common – and not only in Bangladesh. Child marriage is a fundamental violation of human rights and programming like this can support UNICEF’s efforts to put an end child marriage once and for all. I commend 101 East for drawing attention to this important issue.”
For more information about the Award, this year’s finalists, and a Q&A with the winner, please visit:

The winning and shortlisted documentaries can be viewed here:

For media enquiries, please contact:
• Hanizah Hamzah, ABU (Kuala Lumpur), + 603 22822480,

• Cynthia Wong, CASBAA (Hong Kong), + T: +852 3929 1711,

• Kritsada Jirathun, UNICEF (Bangkok), +66 2 356 92 49,