2 We have a vibrant media industry, filled with passionate talent like you all, and powered by creative companies. We also have an exciting tech sector, with entrepreneurial start-ups, and innovative enterprises. With the convergence of the infocomm and media sectors, the possibilities of what we can achieve through infocomm media are limitless. For instance, anyone can now be a broadcaster with just a mobile phone and an internet connection. Games are no longer just for entertainment, but also for serious purposes like healthcare, and delivered on multiple platforms including in virtual and augmented reality. The sky is the limit for digital content creators.
3 The new Infocomm Media Development Authority, or IMDA, will help your media career take flight. IMDA’s role is to empower possibilities for Singaporeans through infocomm media. IMDA already does so in several ways, including providing grants to help Singaporeans transform their creative visions into reality, and bringing local and global companies together to produce even more compelling content. But besides funding and programmes, we see value in a dedicated space for digital content creation, one that our community can call home, and where magical opportunities can be ignited at the intersection of infocomm and media. This is that space. This is PIXEL Studios.
4 Why PIXEL? That’s because a pixel, as we all know, is the smallest unit of a digital image, and represents the individual contribution in infocomm media. But by combining it with others in innovative ways, we can create amazing visuals that capture our imagination.
5 PIXEL Studios will help us soar in three ways. First, it will be a space for content creation. At PIXEL Studios, you can learn how to create compelling content and build sustainable businesses. Workshops including 360-storytelling, content production, virtual and augmented reality, usage of technology in media, or how to improve your digital content using data analytics. We will also help game-makers tap new markets by applying their game design knowhow to other sectors such as healthcare, tourism and education. We will also conduct master classes with experts, networking sessions, and hackathons to develop great new ideas.
6 Our very first programme starts in a few days. In fact on 1 December, IMDA and Maker Studios will launch a new programme called “Spark by Maker”. Through this programme, content creators will develop and produce original content concepts that present potential for series development. A selection of these concepts will be green-lit to be developed into series and distributed across digital platforms.
7 “Spark by Maker” will benefit content creators like Shawne Koh. Shawne was one of the participants in the Maker Bootcamp programme, which we held in May 2015 with Maker Studios. He was one of the six finalists of the bootcamp and eventually signed with Maker Studios. The Bootcamp ignited his passion for making professional online videos, and he is now honing his skills and expanding his portfolio. We want to introduce more of such programmes to empower you and more importantly, make your dreams possible.
8 Second, PIXEL Studios will be a place for collaboration, for it is only by collaborating that we can seize the full potential of infocomm and media. This is why we are officially opening PIXEL Studios alongside SMF Ignite, which is our keystone digital event for the Singapore Media Festival. SMF Ignite hopes to foster cross-pollination of ideas between our young media and tech professionals through specially curated workshops with various industry partners, so as to harness the power of technology to create more compelling content and products.
9 The spirit of cross-pollination of ideas and collaboration seen at SMF Ignite today represents what we intend to do here at PIXEL Studios in the long run, a collaborative space where technology and media converge.
10 This spirit of collaboration is reflected in the wide range of partners that are supporting PIXEL Studios. Besides Maker Studios, PIXEL Studios has established new partnerships with other leading players such as StarHub, Samsung, StyleHaul and goGame, a local mobile game publisher that is backed by gaming giant, SEGA Group. We also acknowledge Sony, which has been a strong partner since we started the Games Solution Centre in Blk 71, by providing Playstation development kits and tech support to local game start-ups. So we are happy that Sony will continue to partner us in PIXEL Studios.
11 Most importantly, PIXEL Studios will be managed by Nanyang Polytechnic, a partner whom IMDA has been working well with in nurturing talent in the Games industry since 2011. I would like to thank NYP, for the fine work in bringing this space together with us today.
12 Third, PIXEL Studios will be a spark for innovation. After all, we are located at the epicentre of innovation in Singapore – in the heart of Mediapolis, next to research institutes, and just down the road from the tech start up communities in BASH. Through the programmes, facilities and resources available, this will be a common place for you to meet with like-minded people from diverse backgrounds, across the media and tech sectors and experiment with new ways of media content creation and storytelling. By inspiring one another and feeding on each other’s knowledge and creativity, you can generate new story ideas, experiment with new ways of media content storytelling, and find new digital platforms to distribute content to untapped audiences.
13 Create, collaborate, innovate. That is how PIXEL Studios will help us produce more amazing digital content, and seize the opportunities in infocomm media.
14 It is therefore with great pleasure that I open PIXEL Studios. Thank you.