Over the past six months a small team and I have been developing an exciting new initiative – BBC Worldwide Labs – in which we will seek to find and work with the most dynamic emerging digital media companies in the UK, details of which we announced exclusively with TNW last week.
Earlier today we finally unveiled the scheme to 120 hopefuls at our first networking event held at Google campus in the heart of East London and the recently dubbed UK’s answer to Silicon Valley.
There was a fantastic buzz from start to finish and it was really exciting to meet so many members of the digital community, including those from gaming, video, mobile, CRM companies who really are pushing the boundaries of technical development.
Dan Heaf, BBC Worldwide’s EVP and Managing Director of Digital shared his insights on the current state of digital media innovation and I walked attendees through the finer details of scheme as well as explaining the application and selection process.
So why are we doing this? We believe that collaboration in the early stages can play a vital role in a company’s success regardless of size, BBC Worldwide included. It also offers companies an opportunity to share knowledge and spark innovation. BBC Worldwide has a long history of collaborating with an array of partners from startups including Spaceport and Viki.com, content producers, service providers all of which have helped us deliver high quality services and experiences for our audiences.
We’re also committed to backing fledging companies and offering them a springboard to strike commercial partnerships with an array of organisations. So whilst we are not seeking to invest money in the companies, nor can we offer a guarantee of a partnership with BBC Worldwide at the end of the six months we’ll be offering five companies the unique opportunity to come and work in our west London offices. They will have access to specialists from across Worldwide who can offer sound business advice from technology, content, marketing, sales, advertising and legal perspectives and we’re planning a host of networking events too.
If you’re interested in being considered for the initiative click here for more details and application form. The closing date for submissions is July 15. We will then select a shortlist of 18 who will be whittled down to five and announced on August 15.