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ITV invites business pitches in bid to strengthen youth appeal

07 Sep 2020  |  Mike Fletcher 
ITV invites business pitches in bid to strengthen youth appeal

ITV is looking to invest in new media ideas, aimed at enhancing the broadcaster’s reach amongst 16-34 year-olds, with the launch of Studio 55 Ventures.

In collaboration with consultancy Founders Intelligence, ITV is on the hunt for eight teams of entrepreneurs, who will each be given £10,000 for joining Studio 55 Ventures before embarking on a six-week programme of training and mentoring from ITV executives.

The programme will culminate in a pitch for long-term investment to ITV CEO Dame Carolyn McCall, alongside UK entrepreneurs Graham Cooke and Brent Hoberman CBE.

The teams behind successful pitches will then receive further funding and be invited to work full-time for three months to user-test and develop their idea into a prototype.

The best prototypes will then be selected and the teams given full backing to turn their idea into a fully-scaled business within ITV. Ideas could range from a new streaming platform or the next TikTok - any form of media business so long as it's appealing to 16-34 year-olds.

ITV CEO Carolyn McCall said: “Since our beginning in 1955, ITV has created fantastic content which has entertained millions whilst reflecting and shaping popular culture. We want to continue to do so in the future and Studio 55 Ventures will help us achieve that goal.

"Investing in people with the passion, vision and drive to ensure ITV remains relevant to younger generations whilst giving us insights into how to evolve in the future is an exciting step forward for ITV. Working with Founders Intelligence will enable us to take this bold step and deliver our strategy of transforming ITV into a digitally led media and entertainment company.”

Applications to join Studio 55 Ventures opened on 7 September. At present, 80% of 16-34 year-olds across the UK are registered users on ITV’s video on demand platform, the ITV Hub, while Love Island remains the most watched programme amongst adults aged 16-34, across any channel.

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