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CFC Media Lab BOOSTs Canada's Digital Entertainment Entrepreneurs
August 22, 2012

New creative business development lab, ideaBOOST, aims to create engaged entertainment by bringing together Canada's best and brightest digital media startups and SMEs in an intensive, four-month business and production bootcamp experience.

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The Canadian Film Centre (CFC) today announced the creation of ideaBOOST, a new creative business development lab that will equip Canadian companies with the tools they need to create a new form of entertainment: engaged entertainment.  Engaged entertainment refers to offerings that go beyond providing passive entertainment, to engage the audience in the creation process. These include video-based entertainment content, games, and applications on the web, mobile and other platforms and multi-platform properties designed for empowered consumers.  ideaBOOST will engage consumers as active participants throughout the four-month process from ideation and development, to product launch and sales.

“By offering strategic business and audience engagement support at the earliest stage of their concepts, the CFC believes ideaBOOST can help catapult Canadian start-ups and SMEs to commercial success in this exploding world of digital entertainment,” says Ana Serrano, CFC's Chief Digital Officer. “With the necessary tools, strategic advice, and access to a global entertainment industry network, nothing will stop these promising digital entertainment players from taking their ideas to the next level.” 

As part of the ideaBOOST process, Canadians are encouraged to visit www.ideaBOOST.ca during the project selection phase (from now until September 18, 2012) to explore the submissions, share them across their social media channels, and vote on the ideas they'd most like to see “BOOSTed”. Applicants with the top votes will form a shortlist,  which an expert jury will narrow down to between six to eight participating companies or teams.

Beginning November 5, the final participants will enter ideaBOOST's unique collaborative environment, where they will spend four intensive months creating digital entertainment prototypes and designing effective business models. They will be provided with a set of tools, access to industry-leading mentors, exposure to Canadian and American entertainment leaders and a unique audience engagement platform.

The toolkit is called the ideaBOOST Audience Engagement Canvas, and is inspired by proven business modeling tools used in Silicon Valley's Lean Startup Movement.

ideaBOOST's Board of Advisors is made up of leading entertainment players and successful entrepreneurs, including Bruce Croxon  (Co-founder, Round13 Capital) Shawn Hardin (Entrepreneur in Residence, Bessemer Venture Partners), David Gale (Executive Vice President, MTVX at MTV Networks), Paul Woolner (Founder, 4Sight Partners) and Andrew Bailey (Chairman, North America, Proximity). 

The audience engagement platform will provide the mechanism for Canadians  not just to follow the ideaBOOST participants' progress online, but to help shape their ideas, and to increase their appeal from an empowered end-user perspective.  “By involving the consumer in the design stages,  entrepreneurs are receiving real-time validation and establishing a relationship with their audience earlier than with traditional models.” said Serrano.

“Since 1997, when CFC created the CFC Media Lab, we have championed and led in the development of ground-breaking digital entertainment products,” says Slawko Klymkiw, CFC's Chief Executive Officer.  “Canada's successful digital entertainment sector is a validation of our approach. With ideaBOOST, not only do we want Canadians to realize the opportunities in new forms of entertainment, but also how this sector can lead Ontario's future economic growth.”

About CFC Media Lab

Created in 1997 by the Canadian Film Centre, the CFC Media Lab provides a unique collaborative training, acceleration and creative production think-tank environment for emerging new media content developers, practitioners and companies.
To become a part of this ground-breaking program by voting on the short list of applicants, and to find out how you can help BOOST the selected participants and their ideas throughout ideaBOOST, please visit www.ideaBOOST.ca

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