CREATIVES GO TO SESAME STREET AND BEYOND

Written on the 11 March 2016 by Laura Daquino

CREATIVES GO TO SESAME STREET AND BEYOND

BRISBANE creatives Nadine Bates and Kristen Souvlis are two of few. They know how to get to Sesame Street.

Now, the children's content producers - who both got their breaks through Channel Ten - are turning their attention to pioneering a new wave of children's content with their startup Like A Photon.

Queensland University of Technology's Creative Enterprise Australia (QUT CEA) has invested in Like A Photon's newest project, Pixapop, an immersive digital multi-platform of books, videos and games for kids.

Souvlis tells Business News Australia the sum of investment is confidential but it delivers startup expertise and cashflow for Like A Photon's team of 12.

"Pixapop is our ability to be a scalable company worldwide," says Souvlis.

"There's still a bit of life left in the linear television old girl, but it can be quite insular and domestic, so we are moving more heavily into digital now and this is where international sales come from.

"QUT CEA saw Pixapop as our opportunity to act like a startup and have given us seed funding and from there, we are looking to raise Series A in about 18 months' time."

Bates and Souvlis say together they are a 'creative hurricane'.

Bates is the creative director and writer who previously had a children's publishing company, and Souvlis is the managing director and producer who started at Totally Wild when she was 19.

They are gutsy - their business cards read 'don't be a dick' - and they think their attitude has made all the difference in landing roles where gender disparity is commonplace.

Last year, Like A Photon was one of only 16 companies around the world invited to pitch for Sesame Street.

"We were one of six teams that got commissioned for our material and pitched four segments - the minimum was one - and we got commissioned for one," says Bates.

"We had a full creative brief complete with animation and music. I think they really valued the passion and work we put into the pitch.

"The Australian companies that get these opportunities tend to be male because of the gender disparity in children's content production.

"The statistics are kind of terrifying. Overall in Australia, 17 per cent of all directors and writers are female. We are absolutely a minority. The industry is undergoing massive changes at the moment in terms of addressing that, particularly Screen Australia. It's long overdue."

Like A Photon are the first female writer and producer team that Sesame Street has ever commissioned. It's also the first Queensland business that Disney has commissioned for animation - a 26-episode Balloon Barnyard series will air in 2017.

The focus now is split between this and developing Pixapop's subscription-based gamified content platform.

A mother of two, Bates says the online platform functions like a 'digital playpen'.

Children can't make in-app purchases and all advertising and revenue streams are directed at adults.

"Pixapop gives feedback on how kids are going and is play-based with curriculum learning points integrated into it," says Bates.

"The children's content market is in a growth period and there's a lot out there but not a place parents can agree on is safe, fun and engaging.

"The fastest way to effect any kind of change in the world is to create a society of open-minded, educated young people and when you get to be part of that, it's a privilege you can't turn down."

Pictured top left: Like A Photon founders Nadine Bates (L) & Kristen Souvlis (R).


Author: Laura Daquino Connect via: Twitter LinkedIn

Latest News

2017 BRISBANE TOP COMPANIES REVEALED

WHILE Queensland is regarded as an economy in transition with the winding down of the mining boom, the 2017 top 50...

2017 BRISBANE TOP COMPANIES 1-10

FROM insurance and banking to travel, gambling, retail, property and pizza, these "heavyweights" have ha...

2017 BRISBANE TOP COMPANIES 11-20

RETAIL, property, an airline, cars, real estate, software services, energy, agriculture, veterinary services bathr...

2017 BRISBANE TOP COMPANIES 21-30

JEWELLERS Michael Hill International listed in 2016 with a half-billion dollar market capitalisation and a new CEO...

Related News

FURNITURE DISRUPTOR SET TO SHARE HIS ONE OF A KIND BUSINESS MODEL

IT'S no secret that Australians love homemaking. Their ceaseless quest to create the perfect place to call hom...

WEEDING OUT THE ASX'S BURGEONING CANNABIS TREND: 8 COMPANIES TO WATCH

A NICHE is budding on the ASX in the form of medical cannabis, an industry which has been on the country's rad...

FRESH CLASS ACTION TO REVEAL ANOTHER SIDE OF SLATER AND GORDON DOWNFALL

ACA LAWYERS has issued a formal letter of demand to Andrew Grech (pictured), managing director of Slater and Gordo...

STARSHIPS WERE MEANT TO DELIVER DOMINO'S PIZZA

NICKI Minaj may have been off the mark when she declared 'starships were meant to fly'. However, she m...

BOOK YOUR FUNCTION SPACE HERE

 

 

 

Contact us

Email News Update Sign Up Contact Details
Subscriptions

PO Box 2087
Brisbane QLD 4001

LoginTell a FriendSign Up to Newsletter