WIFT-T partners with Telefilm for New Media Entrepreneur Incubator program


TORONTO - Women in Film and Television – Toronto has announced the launch of the Telefilm Canada Media Entrepreneur Incubator. This nationally-competitive program—presented by WIFT-T and Telefilm Canada in partnership with Heenan Blaikie LLP and Pricewaterhousecoopers, and in association with British Columbia film, Manitoba Motion Picture Iindustry Association, Nova Scotia film Development Corporation, and Saskfilm and Video Development Crporation—develops senior management skills in high-potential television production micro and SME companies.

The Telefilm Canada Media Entrepreneur Incubator is designed to directly address key issues raised in WIFT-T's groundbreaking employment study, Frame Work: Employment in Canadian Screen-based Media — A National Profile (released in 2004). According to the study, canadian film and television production companies are facing key senior management skills shortages, including specialised knowledge of corporate finance, sophisticated business development, and international marketing. these shortages represent significant barriers to growth and sustainability for media entrepreneurs and the industry in general.

The media entrepreneur incubator program, created by WIFT-T and Telefilm, will meet these challenges head-on. The program will offer eight experienced television production companies from across canada the unique opportunity to sharpen their management skills, learn from industry leaders, and build their own strategies for success in the global marketplace. The program begins with three intensive days of workshops, case studies, and one-on-one consultations with industry leaders and innovators. This incubator will be followed by a six-month mentorship in which participants are paired with experts for ongoing advice and assistance.

"There are few opportunities for independent producers to plan for a future beyond their next project, yet knowledge of senior business management tools is critical for corporate sustainability and growth," says Kate Hanley, president of WIFT-T. "We are excited to be working with telefilm and all of our program partners to deliver this kind of much-needed support to the industry."

British Columbia film, Manitoba Motion Picture Industry Association, Nova Scotia Film Development Corporation, and Saskfilm and Video Development Corporation have partnered with WIFT-T to offer funded-opportunities for participation for companies in their respective provinces. for information about each province's involvement, please contact these agencies directly:

• British Columbia Film: www.bcfilm.bc.ca
• Manitoba Motion Picture Industry association: www.mmpia.ca
• Nova Scotia Film Development Corporation: www.film.ns.ca
• Saskfilm and Video Development Corporation: www.saskfilm.com

WIFT-T is now accepting applications from micro and SME television companies from across canada. the deadline for applications is march 21, 2005. Email wift@wift.com for details, guidelines, and application forms; these will also be available on the WIFT-T website at www.wift.com. a panel of national industry leaders will select eight micro and SME companies for participation in this incredible program.

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