Start-ups inspired to go global

The Northern Ireland Skillset Media Academy recently organised two one-day courses for SME’s working in the growing digital content sector.

 The theme was selling digital content in a global marketplace. This followed research within the digital content industry which identified a demand for this type of course.

Director of the Northern Ireland Skillset Media Academy Dr Colm Murphy said: "Over 20 ambitious start-ups  were inspired by hearing the stories  of local content companies who are making it internationally. They were given the know how to do it themselves from these companies and the international experts who spoke."

The first day, 20 March, 2012, was staged in the Belfast Met Titantic Quarter and the following day it moved to the North West Regional College, Derry city. It included a business skills seminar led by David Naylor who is a partner in Field Fisher Waterhouse. 

David is a legal expert with particular expertise in the fields of media, technology, communications and e-commerce.  He has an extensive client list which includes YouView, the BBC, Ask Jeeves, RIM (Blackberry), Level 3 and Forbes.

 His seminar was followed by a case studies workshop featuring two successful local companies - Airpos (retail software) and Project Zebra (mobile games) in Belfast and Cheersdogears (children’s publishing) and Eyespyfx (mobile security apps) in Londonderry/Derry.

The keynote speaker at both of these events was Susie Wright, Media Project Manager with the Creative Diversity division of Channel 4 who gave a presentation on their strategy including access to funding. 

Each course finished with a lively and thought-provoking panel discussion on the changing media environment and how that affects business in Northern Ireland.

The event was sponsored by the Department of Employment and Learning with assistance from Skillset and Digital Circle. It was organised by University of Ulster, School of Media, Film and Journalism, Belfast Met and North West Regional College.

A final course in the series, focusing on e-commerce and digital content, is due to be held in Coleraine in summer 2012.