From NZ On Air

NZ On Air and Google have teamed up to give successful New Zealand YouTube creators the opportunity to hone their craft, learn from experts and build new audiences.

A $300,000 joint fund has been created, called Skip Ahead, which is available to help New Zealand-based YouTubers create narrative-driven webseries content. Applications are welcomed from content creators who have YouTube channels with a substantial existing subscriber base.

Projects will be selected to receive grants of up to $100,000 from the fund. In addition to grants funding, YouTube will also provide networking opportunities and skill development workshops to help Kiwi creators make new webseries and grow their global audience.

NZ On Air continues to look for new ways to engage audiences with quality local content. The Skip Ahead programme, supported from the Digital Media Fund, recognises that a generation of content creators have already found substantial audiences online.

New research from Roy Morgan shows growth in watch-time on Youtube is accelerating in New Zealand, up 55% year on year. The report also shows the number of hours of content being added to YouTube is growing 80% year on year.

“There is some exciting talent among New Zealand YouTubers. They have ideas and enthusiasm, and in many cases, significant audiences. This fund will help some of these creatives take the next step in their careers, and fully explore using digital media to tell New Zealand stories,” said NZ On Air Chief Executive Jane Wrightson.

The joint initiative is another way in which NZ On Air is leveraging partnerships to expand funds available for New Zealand content. It also fits with the funding agency’s strategy to ‘go where the audiences are’- ensuring local content reaches diverse audiences on multiple platforms.

A Request for Proposals has been issued today. It is available here. Applications close 30 August.