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 International Finance

MESSAGE FROM SCREEN AUSTRALIA'S CEO REGARDING COVID-19: CLICK HERE.

The International Finance fund provides support to Australian projects with a very high level of international appeal, to assist them to develop pitching materials and strategy, in order to best attract international partnerships and finance in the current market.

It is open to long form drama and documentary projects on any platform which are market ready, have undergone a successful development process and can demonstrate development funding from an arm’s length commercial partner.

WHO CAN APPLY? 

Applications for this fund are open to anyone who:

  • meets all requirements and conditions in our Terms of Trade
  • is an Australian individual or team.  Co-productions may also apply with an application from the Australian Company.
  • has a market-ready, long-form project on any platform
  • has undergone significant creative development and has the key creative team attached
  • has a project with a high level of international commercial appeal and a clear path to audience
  • controls the rights and has meaningful creative control of the project
  • can evidence successful development process and funding from an arm’s length commercial partner (i.e. a substantial and well-known international or Australian commercial entity with an effective track record on similar projects, for example, a commissioning platform, broadcaster, local or international distributor, studio or production company of substance) and/or Screen Australia where their development funding will have been fully acquitted as a pre-condition of eligibility.
  • has not received a Screen Australia International Development (i.e. International Finance, International Delegations, International Pitching Events) grant in the last 12 months.

Long form is defined as a single feature project (scripted or unscripted) of at least 85 minutes duration, an episodic project of at least 3 commercial hours, or an online project of at least 45 minutes total series duration. XR (Extended Reality) projects can be any length.

Market ready means the project must be creatively sound, budgeted, and at a stage of sourcing finance, partners and/or pre sales. It will have undergone significant creative development and have the key creative team attached. The stage of development might vary dependent on content type, intended platform of release, and the proposed strategy.  

Please note that applications cannot be made retrospectively.

WHAT FUNDING IS AVAILABLE?

Funding of $3,000 - $15,000 will be granted to successful applicants and can cover items that will elevate the pitch and/or pitching strategy. These might include:

  • creation of marketing and pitching materials
  • if required, work-shopping of the pitch from appropriate and experienced industry mentors or consultants
  • if required, assistance from appropriate and experienced industry mentors or consultants, to help with strategic planning. (e.g. suggested key meeting targets and best way to approach, or advice around financing and deals, and other current market trends).

The types of items you apply for will depend on the level of experience of the team and nature of project.

The amount of funding you apply for should be relative to the size of the investment potential and the likelihood of attracting partners. For commercial projects of scale with a strong likelihood to attract significant finance and large marketplace partners, it would be at the higher end. For projects of smaller scale it would be at a lower end.

HOW & WHEN CAN I APPLY?      

Applications for the International Finance fund can be made at any time through the application portal.

Applications consist of:

  • completed online Application form, including a Project Summary and a Detailed Proposal for your international strategy (details below)
  • evidence of currently secured production finance and marketplace partners and/ or evidence of existing strong expressions of interest, if applicable
  • existing pitching /marketing materials that will be used , if applicable
  • if Screen Australia has not been involved with the latest development stage, a third party warranty will be required. This consists of evidence of development funding and a creative assessment of the project by any third party commercial partners, as well as a two-page outline of the project.

Project Summary details you will be asked to provide include:

  • a short summary of current development status and all development investment to date
  • current finance plan including any currently secured production finance and marketplace partners
  • a short summary of the intended pathway to audience
  • a short summary of the international appeal.

The Detailed Proposal should outline your international pitching strategy with outcomes and reasons to support. This should include:

  • proposed list of meetings and strategy, with intended outcomes for each
  • what else is needed in order to achieve best possible outcomes for the strategy? Please also state rationale for each item. For example:
  • creation of marketing and pitching materials (e.g. a pre-recorded pitch reel)
  • work-shopping of the pitch from appropriate and experienced industry mentors or consultants
  • assistance from appropriate and experienced industry mentors or consultants, to help with strategic planning. (e.g. suggested key meeting targets and best way to approach, or advice around financing and deals, and other current market trends). 
  • the budget to carry out the intended international strategy
  • who from the creative team will be pitching and why? Including any details of relevant experience and relationships, as well as any  internationally successful completed work that will be leveraged.

HOW ARE APPLICATIONS ASSESSED?

In addition to addressing the specific aims of the fund (above), applications will be assessed by Screen Australia executives or industry specialists as required against the following equally weighted criteria:

  • Perceived project strength - based on:
  • the international commercial viability.
  • the strength and distinctiveness of the story, and if the execution will resonate with its intended audience.
  • a demonstrated pathway to audience appropriate to the project’s budget size and financing strategy.
  • Market readiness of project - based on:
  • stage of development in relation to the type of content type, intended platform of release, and the proposed strategy.
  • other key attachments and production partners, including agents and any EPs.
  • if applicable, any existing marketplace attachments and/or secured investment in proportion to the overall budget.
  • Perceived effectiveness of the proposed international strategy including planned preparation, appropriateness of meetings, activities and outcomes.
  • Perceived potential of the applicants (and also any industry mentors/ consultants), to achieve the proposed international strategy based on relevant and recent credits and industry experience pertinent to the strategy.

Other factors, that may also influence Screen Australia’s decisions include:

  • availability of funds.
  • the intent of the project and the intent and suitability of the creative team to reflect gender equity and/or the diversity of people and experiences from around Australia.

Turnaround time for decisions is normally four weeks and the outcome will be advised in writing.

Terms of Funding

Funding will be in the form of a grant and subject to a non-negotiable standard contract.

Funding recipients are required to provide a written report detailing the outcomes of the support. Specifically, they are required to report and keep Screen Australia advised of:

  • a summary of meetings undertaken.
  • what the companies met with expected to see as far as pitch, as well as feedback on what worked and what did not for each meeting and/ or pitch.
  • any other useful information on what various companies are currently looking for or reporting market wise.
  • contact list for all meetings.
  • intel on types of deals being offered.
  • feedback on any industry consultants or mentors enlisted in the strategic planning.
  • the actual funding raised as a result of the strategy.

What will help your application?

We receive many applications every year, so you need to make a strong case for your project. Here are some pointers to help you deliver the strongest application possible:

  • Make sure you meet all eligibility requirements in these guidelines and in Terms of Trade.
  • Make sure you have all the required details and attachments ready to be submitted with the application.
  • Make sure your application talks directly to the assessment criteria outlined in these guidelines.

If you are unsure about your eligibility or have questions about the application form, please email us at [email protected] or call Program Operations on 1800 507 901.