CANNES — Fast-driving from a huge digital media publishing base into the creation and production of premium content for global platforms and beyond, top Spanish-language digital native media group 2btube has clinched a wide-ranging production partnership with José Miguel Contreras’ Madrid-based Lacoproductora.
The deal comes fast on the heels of 2btube’s production alliance with Facebook Watch, unveiled Tuesday at Mipcom in FW’s confirmation of a brace of European partnerships, and, via 2btube subsid Touché Films, the production of an upcoming mini series for YouTube Originals, to be released in mid-2020, which was unveiled at YouTube’s Brandcast in Mexico.
At Mipcom, 2btube executive chairman Bastián Manintveld also confirmed territories for “Dedicado a mi ex,” Touché Films first theatrical feature film.
Launched last year by Contreras – a highly-regarded top executive at Spanish scripted-series powerhouse Globomedia as well as ex CEO of LaSexta and VP of network group Atresmedia, – Lacoproductora has hit the ground running, co-producing Manuela Burló Moreno’s half-hour comedy series for HBO España and reality show “El cielo puede esperar” for Movistar Plus.
The 2btube framework accord with Lacoproductora is a wide-ranging development and co-production agreement for digital, TV and a first movie for theatrical release in Spain, said Manintveld. Details of first titles will be released later this year.
2btube will produce four creator lead series, to be released in November. Each show will have 8 episodes which will be published in November and December. The line-up:
*“Menú a 20” A kitchen-based challenge show with renowned influencers, celebrities, comedians and chefs such as Natalia Rodríguez, Soraya Arnelas , Agustín Jiménez and Eva Soriano and chef Paco Bello;
*“Amor superdotado” (Gifted Love) A fiction series about an international convention of highly intellectual students discovering love requires more than intelligence written-directed by established filmmaker Roberto Pérez Toledo (“Como la espuma” “Seis puntos sobre Emma”) and starring Martina D’Antiochia (Santiago Segura’s “Padre no hay más que uno”) and Daniel Arias.
*Epic Roomates” An animated series from Academia Play and narrated by Destripando la historia “where famous personalities from history such as Cleopatra, Frida Kahlo, Albert Einstein, Nikola Tesla and many more become roommates.”
*“Intercepta2” (Street Lifeline) Comedians Jorge Cremades , Antón Lofer and Polifacético choose random participants from the street and egg them on to participate in competitive prank-calling.
“At 2btube, we’re thrilled to participate in the Facebook Watch program. It allows us to create engaging new shows with some of our most popular talent covering a broad range of genres; from fiction to animation and from street pranks to cooking,” 2btube CEO, Fabienne Fourquet said in a statement.
She added: “It brings together what we do best: Connecting with young audiences through contemporary and high-quality story-telling.”
An adventure comedy with a young adult cast, the YouTube Originals miniseries has now gone into production, and is being shot with international audiences in mind, said Fourquet.
2btube is very focused on young digital native Spanish-speaking audiences worldwide. Its 20 YouTube channels reach some 40 million-50 million subscribers. The company has worked with all the Hollywood studios, Netflix, HBO, Televisa, and Telemundo, promoting their releases.
“We thought if we’re good enough to sell other peoples movies and TV product, maybe we should try to create and sell our own,” Manintveld told Variety at Cannes.
Made in co-production with Colombia’s Dynamo, a producer on “Narcos,” romantic comedy “Dedicado a mi ex” will be released on Nov. 1 in movie theaters in Mexico by Sony Pictures, in Peru by Tondero and Dynamo in Colombia. Touché will handle distribution in Ecuador – a move that marks 2btube’s move into theatrical distribution.
Founded in 2014 by the Netherlands’ Manintveld and France’s Fourquet, 2btube has grown dramatically from a startup to become the leading privately-owned Spanish media group in terms of digital audience, Manintveld said, reaching 8 million unique users per month in Spain early this year, according to Comscore.
“We chose the Spanish part of the world because the digital publishing landscape in many other parts – France, the U.K. U.S. Netherlands or Germany- was already a lot busier and more competitive, so more expensive to compete,” said Manintveld.
“Spanish is also the first language of half a billion people in the whole world and the second language on YouTube,” said Fourquet. “Not a lot of companies were addressing the region on language rather than country basis,” she added.