The Miami Market's Present And Future as Reported in VideoAge Daily.

Position:NATPE Review

The two daily editions of VideoAge at NATPE painted three different pictures of the 40th edition of the TV market, which was held in Miami Beach in January for its ninth consecutive year. The pictures included NATPE's present challenges, its future issues, and the exhibitors who leveraged the market the most.

The front page of the Day One Daily--which, like the Day Two edition, was distributed to all participants in their hotel rooms--focused on the market's business at hand, reporting on the fact that the panelists at a good number of conferences were also exhibitors--a development that was most welcome. It also made note of the unusually large number of parties (which ultimately totaled 17 in a three-day period) and the challenges presented by several factors, such as the high costs associated with the market's venue (the Fontainebleau hotel), the market's narrow scope (limited to LATAM), the reduced number of participants, and the not-for-profit association's finances.

Those elements sparked an unusual NATPE board meeting on Wednesday January 23, the second day of the market. This sort of meeting is usually held at the market's conclusion. At the end of the meeting, NATPE's CEO, JP Bommel, reported to VideoAge Daily that the board had full confidence in the association's current management.

During this exclusive interview with a VideoAge reporter, Bommel was presented with several suggestions harvested from participants and exhibitors alike. And here are some of them:

One proposal was that the market floor should open at 9 a.m.--not 10 a.m.--on the first day of the event, in order to give buyers and sellers more time to conduct business, since many participants tend to leave on the earlier side.

Another was that even though the increased participation of exhibitors as panelists was a widely approved development, many felt that the conferences should start on Day Two, or at least be relegated to the afternoons, so as not to steer buyers away from the market's floors.

A third idea was that the conferences should involve a larger number of buyers. Bommel responded to this one, stating that, this year, NATPE organized private gatherings of buyers and sellers. Another suggestion was for NATPE to offer free registration to buyers who commit to meeting with at least 35 sellers.

In terms of efficiency, a widely expressed opinion was to replace the ineffective outside organization that coordinated registrations this year.

It was also said that...

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