Let Singapore Media Fusion (SMF) be your guide to the richness and diversity of Singapore media companies and what they have to offer.
SMF – a positioning strategy geared towards promoting the achievements of Singapore media companies and talents-boosts the local media community by nurturing and training local talent; conducting targeted marketing campaigns; facilitating partnerships and tie-ups; and initiating support schemes.
SMF also helps local companies and professionals take flight at international events and festivals around the globe by organising delegations and setting up dedicated Singapore Pavilions.
Encapsulated by its four key thrusts-Bold. Surprising. Optimistic. Supportive-SMF presents a unified front for Singapore companies in the international marketplace and projects a unique voice for the Singapore media community.
Singapore Media Landscape
Singapore’s media sector covers broadcasting, film and video, publishing, music, online and mobile media, games and animation.. The sector contributed S$18.2 billion in revenue in 2005, employing more than 53,000 people and contributing some S$4.9 billion in value added.
As advancements in digital technology continue to shape the future of entertainment, Singapore has its eye on developing new media infrastructure and services. In the area of broadcasting, for example, we are moving towards an all-digital environment, by promoting IPTV and the adoption of HDTV nationwide. In 2007, Singapore was the first country in Southeast Asia to launch commercial HDTV services. Today, commercial HD television services are available on free-to-air, cable and IPTV platforms.
Singapore has also identified the interactive digital media sector as a key driver of growth, and has rolled out a S$500 million R&D programme, to push out innovative digital media services to meet the needs of an increasingly tech-savvy audience.
Singapore Media City
To create an even more vibrant space for the media industry to grow, MDA is developing Mediapolis -a place dedicated for anyone and everyone who is in the media industry. It will house content creators, financiers, distributors and other industry players – in fact, the entire media ecosystem -creating a global media city. The Media Development Authority of Singapore will also be located at Fusionopolis, making it a convenient place to be for media enterprises.
one-north is located in Singapore’s Buona Vista district and is envisioned as an icon of the knowledge economy where creative minds, whether scientists, technologists or venture capitalists, will come together to shape the future.
Singapore is envisaged as a Global Media City, Asia’s leading media marketplace and financing hub -one where quality content is produced and digital media is developed. In this Asian media utopia, media services and projects are created, developed, traded and distributed to the international market.
Singapore Media Fusion Plan
In response to global trends towards digitisation and a rising interest in Asia, MDA is updating its Media 21 blueprint which mapped out the path towards the transformation of Singapore into a Global Media City.
This updated strategy -Singapore Media Fusion Plan (SMFP) -envisions Singapore as a Trusted Global Capital for New Asia Media.
Singapore Media Scene
Singapore’s media scene has never been more exciting. Experience the vibrancy of Singapore’s media industry and see the breadth of value we can offer to the world!
Singapore’s diverse media services sector can support a wide variety of content production, including projects for regional or international markets.
Singapore’s vibrant media services sector is capable of catering to all manner of projects, from television programmes or commercials, to animated or live-action films. There is a wide variety of services, including sound design and audio production, talent management, and production and post production for short-form or long-form media content.
The Media Development Authority of Singapore is a government agency tasked with advancing Singapore’s media industries and promoting Singapore as a vibrant global media city:
The Interactive Digital Media R&D Programme Office (IDMPO) is a multi-agency initiative hosted within MDA. It is responsible for boosting and supporting R&D efforts in innovative and new media technologies. Its schemes are targeted at four main groups: start-ups, Institutes of Higher Learning, industry, and schools. The iJAM – IDM Jump-start And Mentor – initiative in particular supports individuals and start-ups with breakthrough ideas:
ASEAN Media Portal
Hosting new and archived multimedia clips on news, documentaries, heritage and tourism information of its 10 member countries, the ASEAN Media Portal provides a window to the rich and diverse cultures of the region. Content on the Portal is coordinated by MDA, with support from other local government agencies.
International Media Partners
In the spirit of cooperation, and believing in the benefits of cross-pollination, Singapore has long engaged its Asian and International partners in the Media arena. It has done so both at Governmental and inter-agency levels, through government-to-government bilateral Co-Production Treaties and Memoranda of Understanding on media cooperation that the MDA have signed with various overseas counterparts. Such agreements open doors to exchanges of equal importance, to win-win business deals as well as meaningful creative and cultural exchanges. Building these platforms spur our media companies to reach out for wider markets, and enable them to do so with success. These platforms also enhance the awareness of, interest in and demand for Singapore media capabilities, products and services. This forward-looking and open-minded strategy is vital to the continued growth and diversification of the Singapore media industry.
Government-to-Government Bilateral Co-production Agreements & MOUs
Bringing together the media talents and resources of two countries can enable the creation of high-quality media content targeted at the International market. The co-mingling of talents, creative and cultural capital, as well as other resources, can help projects come together more quickly, tapping on best practices from collaborating countries. Furthermore, each film or programme approved under an official co-production agreement could qualify as ‘national content’ in each participating country for the purposes of audiovisual regulation. For Singapore media companies, successful applicants for the official co-production status can also apply for any benefits or programmes of assistance that are applicable to Singapore productions.
To date, the Singapore Government and MDA have entered into official Co-Production Agreements with:
- Australia – approved co-production projects are considered local content for regulation and national productions eligible for schemes of assistance in Singapore and Australia
- Canada – approved co-production projects are considered as a national production in each of the co-production countries and co-producers can apply for benefits or programs of assistance available in their country for such co-productions
- China – approved feature film and telemovie projects are considered as national productions in each of the co-production countries. The co-producers can apply for schemes of assistance available in their countries for such co-productions.
- Korea – approved TV co-productions qualify as local content to fulfil content programming hours and are national productions eligible for schemes of assistance in Singapore and Korea
- New Zealand – approved co-production projects are entitled to all the benefits which are, or may be, accorded to national productions (e.g. subsidies, tax incentives, or other financial benefits) by Singapore and New Zealand
Singapore and MDA have also signed several Memoranda of Understanding (MOU) with partners in the region and around the world. These MOU are agreements of cooperation, which set out guidelines facilitating activities such as industry co-productions, attendance at media festivals and trade events of participating countries, training exchanges, and collaborations in marketing and distribution of each other’s media content, etc.
Singapore’s MOU partners include media organisations in China, France, Philippines, Australia, Korea, Italy, Thailand, Canada, Japan, as well as the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO).
Singapore and MDA have seen the value of existing agreements and partnerships with regional and global partners in the media arena. MDA will continue to cultivate strategic partnerships and forge agreements with more international partners. MDA will also deepen the media engagements with key media markets through government-to-government exchanges and business trade missions. This is to pave the way for more co-productions and collaborations, further develop Singapore’s media market, add value to the local media industry and, at the same time, promote Singapore as an attractive location for media businesses and talents.
As Singapore’s network of strategic partners grows, so does the worldwide market for Singapore media capabilities, services, talents and “Made-By-Singapore” media content.
Strategic partnerships with overseas media-related government ministries, agencies and companies will create greater international recognition for Singapore media capabilities and talents, and enable Singapore’s homegrown media companies to create more high-quality content for the international market
Mediapolis @ one-north
– Setting the stage for Singapore to be the TRUSTED GLOBAL CAPITAL OF NEW ASIA MEDIA
Mediapolis @ one-north is set to be Singapore’s first digital media hub where creative talents live, work and play in a synergistic environment.
Slated to be fully completed by 2020, the 19-ha innovation and R&D facility will house a media ecosystem of soundstages with green screen capabilities, digital production and broadcast studios, as well as interactive digital media (IDM) and R&D facilities. It will also offer fast and secure broadband connectivity to enable efficient processing, management and distribution of digital media content and services.
To ensure a comfortable, conducive and convenient environment, Mediapolis @ one-north will be supported by a network of retail and recreational amenities, as well as work lofts and accommodation facilities.
– Media content and services conveniently located together
– World Class global connectivity infrastructure
– Proximity to a skilled community of creative talents
Coupled with Singapore’s highly organised infrastructure, robust IP/digital rights management/protection and friendly business climate, Mediapolis @ one north is set to be the ideal home for companies to create top quality media content for global markets.
Singapore Company Funding
A wide-ranging variety of development and funding schemes have been tailor-made to help media professionals and companies turn their visions into reality.
IDEAS+, an initiative under MDA’s GAME + Programme, is designed to provide Singapore–based companies with funding for the creation of a prototype in order to secure a publisher or attract financing for a market-ready, commercial video game product.
- Identify new industry talent and grow the capacity of the Singapore video game development industry.
- Fuel the industry with innovative new game prototype development.
- Enable companies in demonstrating their proprietary game concepts to prospective publishers and investors;
- Act as a catalyst for the development of high quality, original IP that make a positive contribution to the Singapore economy.
MDA will support UP TO 50% (capped at a sum up to S$50,000) of a project’s qualifying costs for each successful applicant for the production of the project.
Examples of major allowable costs are a percentage of qualified:
- Hardware & Software
- Professional Services (3rd party services)
- For Companies, the applicant must be registered as a legal entity1and incorporated in Singapore with at least 30% local shareholding, central management and control in Singapore, subject to the provisions of the Companies Act (Cap.50).
- For Individuals, individual applicants must be Singapore citizens or Permanent Residents at least 18 years of age.
- The project must involve the creation of interactive game that is designed primarily for digital platform (PC, Game Consoles, and Handheld devices).
- Projects designed for multi-platform delivery are encouraged.
- Projects done as part of any academic or professional coursework are not eligible.
- Only expenses incurred during the project qualifying period will be supported.
- Funding will not be provided for the ongoing administrative and / or operational costs of the project.
- The project must be undertaken in Singapore.
A prototype is a playable version of a segment of a video game that demonstrates viability, technology, key game features, game play mechanics and the ability of a game development team to deliver the product.
Prototypes supported through this program must:
- be proprietary to the applicant company;
- be intended for a consumer audience;
- be intended to educate, inform or entertain;
The company must also be able to demonstrate that support for the creation of the prototype is likely to lead to:
- The applicant company securing a publishing deal or confirmed financing for the development of the market-ready video game product; and
- The development of a market-ready video game product that will provide significant benefit to the Singapore economy (e.g. substantial employment opportunities for Singapore residents, revenue opportunities for Singapore companies, critical acclaim/media attention, derivative products).
- Applications are to be submitted using a designated application form and be returned by the Submission Date.
- If CDs are required to accompany the submission, applicants are to deposit this at the MDA Reception on Level 16, Symbiosis at Fusionopolis, attention to Ms Farah Lyna Hashim before the closing date).
- Applicants are to submit a concept paper in the proposal template provided incorporating the following information:
- An overview of the concept
- Background of company
- Profile of key personnel
- Game concept
- Technical Platform
- An outline of anticipated project risks.
- Outline of production schedule
- Summary of costs
- Detailed budget breakdown
- Applications must include the following support document
- Summary and detailed budgets outlining projected costs.
- Production schedule;
- CVs for all applicants and other key team members;
- Company background and Business Registration information (for submission from companies);
- Any other documentation or supporting material that might assist consideration of the application.
- MDA officers will process the application following the closing of the Submission Date and upon complete submission of all documents required in items 1 to 4 above. Proposals with incomplete documents will be rejected.
- Short listed candidates may be required to attend an interview, by invitation, which will take place within 4 weeks of the Submission Date.
- Selection and evaluation will be made by representatives from MDA (or those appointed by the MDA).
- Successful applicants will typically receive MDA’s Letter of Offer within 8 weeks from the time of proposal evaluation.
- IDEAS+ recipients will be required to update the MDA regularly on the progress of their projects.
- All copyrights to the completed projects will be vested with the recipients. The management and any transfer of the rights are hence responsibilities of the recipients. However, the MDA reserves the right to use the projects including the content therein for purely noncommercial and publicity purposes.
- The MDA will require due credits in the website and all promotional & publicity programmes / materials of the completed game product as acknowledgement for the support and assistance rendered by the MDA under IDEAS+.
- Applicants will be assessed based on the evidence of their ability and commitment to successfully manage and deliver the project. Also, there should be a focus on exploiting the intellectual property created by the project. The proposal should therefore demonstrate:
- The Applicant’s objectives in producing the product (contribution to self-development in terms of skill set, career etc).
- The concept and how it relates to target market. (e.g. USA, Europe, North Asia, SEA).
- Understanding of intended target audience and consumer behaviour.
- Understanding of good user interface in deploying concept.
- How the concept differentiates itself from existing games within the market.
- The commercial potential of the project and plans to bring it to the next level (projected version updates)
- Companies are encouraged to submit only ONE proposal at any one time and ensure completion of the prototype before submitting another proposal. Multiple proposal submissions DO NOT guarantee acceptance or shortlisting after the Submission Date.
Milestone and Deliverables
The commencement of the project should be within 3 months after receiving the Letter of Offer from MDA. Milestones and deliverables will be determined by MDA and the Developer. Disbursement of funding will be administered by MDA. Periodic reports should be submitted with the milestone to track progress. Applicant should provide a report upon completion of project to update on what the actual Total Investment Committed in Singapore (TICS) is as a result of the funding.
The final deliverable at the end of the project should be a playable demo of the concept for launch on the target platform (PC, Console, Handheld, Mobile) with current market average performance capability. Detailed submission requirements are as follow:
- Game Design Implementation : Playable implementation of ALL game play mechanics for at least one playable level for each game modes (main game, mini games, extra game modes)
- It is possible to complete one game session
- Controls must be responsive and accurate
- Summary of play-testing conducted
- Look and Feel
- Visuals: No placeholders (assets, animations and texturing can be incomplete or early versions)
- Sound (if applicable)/ effects play on cue
- Music soundtrack plays and loops correctly
- Software Usability & Functionality
- Runs and quits without crashing
- Game Structure: Menu screens / Options (if applicable)
- Instructions (if applicable)
- Installer and/or installation instructions (if applicable)
SCREEN (TV) Funding Program
This scheme aims to encourage the production and distribution of original, high quality Madeby- Singapore content for international markets, as well as provides Singapore media content production companies with opportunities to maximize the commercial value of their properties.
Under this scheme, the Media Development Authority will co-invest, together with local media content production companies, and other industry partners and investors, in properties that present opportunities for global reach, and returns, under a co-sharing of rights and revenues arrangement.
The MDA’s level of participation is dependent on the scale, scope and merits of the project.
Co-investment projects usually involves two or more parties, including international partners whereby a significant and/or meaningful level of activities in development, pre-production, production and/or post-production are undertaken by Singapore. The distribution activities shall be undertaken by independent agents jointly-appointed by the co-investors in the projects.
The applicant must be a legal entity (branch office, private, or public company) registered and incorporated in Singapore with at least 30% local shareholding by Singaporeans/Singapore Permanent Residents and with central management and control in Singapore. Applying companies must be prepared to co-invest and have an ownership stake in the project.
How to apply
Eligible TV production companies (inclusive of broadcasters’ in-house production units) can submit project proposals to MDA for consideration all year round. Companies shall need to submit the application form duly completed, together with the following documents and/or materials to support the evaluation of the proposals:
a. ACRA business profile
b. financial statements of the company for the past 3 to 5 years
c. synopsis, storyline, treatment, character bible, draft script for first episode
d. fully-itemised production budget, covering above-the-line, production and postproduction
e. production schedule
f. track record, experience and profiles of above-the-line team, including director, producer, writer, lead cast, etc
g. level of financial commitment from producer, investors, broadcasters and/or distributors
h. level of distribution secured on free-to-air TV, pay TV, other broadcast platforms, or a combination
i. written commitment(s) from investors, broadcasters and/or distributors
j. anticipated sales and returns on investment
All proposals submitted shall be assessed on their creative merits, financial returns, as well as economic contributions to Singapore. Greater consideration will be given to projects that involve international partners and have meaningful Singapore involvement, for instance where a significant amount of above-the-line work is carried out by Singaporeans/Singapore Permanent Residents.
Specifically, the evaluation shall cover content originality and creativity, producer’s capacity to deliver, project’s exportability and exploitability, value-added aspects and economic spin-offs like direct investment, business spending, job creation, skills/technology upscaling, intellectual property, new/established partners, and international recognition of Singapore as an international co-producing partner, etc.
Within 6 – 8 weeks upon receipt of the duly completed application form and all required supporting documents, MDA will inform applicant if application has been successful.
Depending on the nature and length of the project, the applicant must submit the completed production to the MDA within the stipulated time frame.
Each project shall be bound by a contractual agreement between the MDA, the company and any third parties. This means that a company wishing to effect any changes will need to seek the prior approval of all parties.
The co-investment monies will be disbursed to the applicant on a milestone basis. Applicants must submit to the MDA an electronic invoice, along with the respective deliverables at each drawdown date. At the end of the project, the applicant must also submit an audited financial statement for verification. Please see the following details regarding this:
a. A drawdown schedule will be formulated, detailing how the co-investment monies are disbursed from milestone to milestone.
b. As a pre-requisite for each drawdown, the MDA must be satisfied with the respective deliverables to be submitted by the applicant.
c. The final drawdown can only be made after MDA’s acceptance of the final deliverables, which includes verification of the audited statement by the MDA.
Market Development Scheme
Singapore media companies need international exposure in order for opportunities to be created, for horizons to be broadened and to open up new markets in other countries.
This scheme was created to encourage Singapore-based media companies to tap into the supported markets listed below. It helps media professionals with the expansion of business development efforts, like overseas mission trips and participation at key media events.
Media Education Scheme
The Media Education Scheme is an initiative by the Media Development Authority to build up media manpower capabilities in the Film, Animation, Publishing, Broadcast, Music, Interactive Media and Games sectors. The Scheme is targeted at students and industry professionals who wish to pursue undergraduate and postgraduate media-related courses at reputable overseas or local tertiary institutions.
Media Education Scheme (Overseas)
The Media Education Scheme (Overseas) covers tuition fees of up to S$40,000 per year, or subject to a maximum of S$100,000. There is presently no bond imposed on the recipients upon successful completion of their studies. However, recipients must fulfil a two-year service commitment in Singapore by working in MDA or media-related companies. While flexibility is given to recipients who may choose to defer starting their service commitment immediately upon graduation, all service commitments must be fulfilled within five years upon graduation.
Media Education Scheme (Local)
The Media Education Scheme (Local) covers tuition fees of up to S$10,000 per year, subject to a maximum of S$20,000. There is presently no bond or service commitment imposed on the recipient upon successful completion their studies. However, recipients are required to serve a three to six month internship with the MDA.
Who may apply
All Singapore citizens and permanent residents who are intent on a long-term career in the local media industry are welcome to apply for the Media Education Scheme. Applicants must have already applied to, or gained admission in an institution for full-time undergraduate or postgraduate studies related to media. Male applicants must have completed their National Service at the time of their studies.
- Applicant’s academic and creative potential
- Applicant’s achievements, track record and relevant experience
- Benefit and value of the studies to the applicant and to the development of the media industry in Singapore
Applicants are requested to submit the following materials:
- Completed application form
- Certified true copy of relevant academic records
- Letters of recommendations from two referees (referees must not be immediate relatives of the applicant)
- A one-page essay on how you would contribute to the media industry
- Samples of applicant’s portfolio
- Information on proposed course of study, including the estimated cost
- Proof of admission into course of study (where applicable)
- Other relevant supporting documents
SHORT FILM GRANT GUIDELINES
The SFC Short Film Grant (the “Grant”) aims to encourage aspiring and practicing filmmakers to develop a short film subject (the “Project”), to experiment with the film genre and to hone their story-telling skills. The SFC Funds up to $10,000 per Project.
All Singapore-based filmmakers who are Singapore citizens or permanent residents are welcome to apply for this Grant. The Applicant can only be either the director or producer of the Project.
A short film is typically less than 30 minutes in length.
The film categories eligible for the Grant are:
a. Drama/ Fiction
b. Experimental (no music videos)
c. Documentary (no instructional, magazine, travel, reality or talk-show styles)
Any work that is commissioned (in whole or part) by a third party, or on a work-for-hire basis shall not qualify for funding under this Grant.
In assessing applications, the following factors will be considered:
- Innovative and creative potential of proposed short film;
- Professional quality of the script/ treatment and budget submitted;
- Applicant’s film-related background and track record; and
- Applicant’s potential in and commitment to the Singapore film industry.
In addition, for the Documentary category, the following factors will also be considered:
- Treatment of subject matter; and
- Extent of ground research proposed/ completed.
Applications for the Short Film Grant must be submitted prior to the completion of production. Please note also that the average processing time for an application is 8 weeks.
The Short Film Grant will consider applications at every quarter of the year. The deadlines for submission are: 6pm Singapore time on 1 February, 1 May, 1 August, and 1 November. Should these dates fall on a public holiday or weekend, applications can be submitted latest by the next working day.
Other Funding Programs:
IDEAS (Animation Development)
SFC Script Development
SFC 35mm Fulfilment Fund
Travel Assistance Programme