E. Europe TV mart attracts 510 buyers

BUDPEST — NATPE-owned Discop 2011, Eastern Europe’s premier television market, wrapped on Thursday after three days of deal making, which market organizer and NATPE prexy Rick Feldman called “a small increase (in business) over last year.”

With 510 buyers and 402 sellers registered, business at the market exceeded the expectations of some participants, although Feldman said media in the region is still suffering from the economic crisis.

“There was not a lot of home runs being hit,” said Feldman of the deals struck. “There were doubles and triples though.”

The 2011 Discop marks the end of an era in that future markets will carry the NATPE brand after NATPE’S recent majority buy out of the market, and Feldman said a challenge for this new era will be accommodating the new phenomenon of studio screenings.

At last year’s Discop, distributors for Warner Bros. Television held special off-site screenings for buyers a day before the market officially opened. This year, other major studios arrived in Budapest to conduct off-site screenings, which may have competed with the market, drawing buyers away from the Discop meeting area in the Sofitel Chain Bridge Hotel.

“The single biggest concern for next year is how to accommodate the studios and their screenings,” said Feldman. “We want to figure out some way for them to get the time they need with buyers without having a negative impact on the market itself.”

Feldman said the solution is simple coordination. “We want to work with the studios to accommodate their needs,” he told Variety.

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