Our House Media’s blueprint for international markets

With five series put into production this year and a recent pickup from Investigation Discovery, Simon Lloyd discusses the strategy behind the prodco's first year of business.

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When Simon Lloyd and Joe Houlihan departed Cineflix Media to launch Our House Media, they knew success would hinge on keeping one eye on Canada and the other on international markets. 

As the duo continues to announce new projects in production for both sides of the border, it looks like the time was right to make their move with a cross-border strategy.

“We don’t see Canada as one country and the U.S. as one country – we look at North America as an entity. We look to hold on to shows and sell them internationally,” Lloyd told Playback Daily.

Our House Media has so far this year put five series into production, many with commitments on both sides of the border.

Last week, U.S. net Investigation Discovery announced it picked up Our House Media’s Untouchable: Power Corrupts. Two weeks ago, Blue Ant Media announced renewals for Backroad Bounty and Paranormal Survivor, with the first season of the latter also airing on Destination America in the U.S. In early spring 2015, Our House Media got the greenlight from Great American Country for six, one-hour episodes of Endless Yard Sale: Race to the State Line, a spin-off of the Scripps original format Endless Yard Sale, and the company’s Million Dollar View will bow on W Network in Canada in 2016. Our House Media also recently completed a pilot to potentially air in both Canada and the U.S., Lloyd says.

Lloyd did note that many of the partnerships the company has been able to strike in the U.S. was a result of previous relationships the principals had when they worked with Cineflix. The company is now expanding its ambition into the U.K., working with British broadcasters to co-finance series. It currently has two projects in the pipeline with British broadcasters. To get the series out to market internationally, Our House Media last summer inked a distribution output deal with Blue Ant Media’s global distribution arm.

“We are building that triangle between Canada and the U.S. and the U.K., and then with Blue Ant as our distribution partner to monetize the shows internationally,” Lloyd said.

Creating original formats have also been a key part of the prodco’s international monetization strategy, rather than adapting existing formats. Within the past 18 months, Lloyd said he has noticed an increased appetite from broadcasters for original formats as adaptations are starting to feel overdone.

“I think there is a movement towards…re-engaging in original formats,” Lloyd said.

Execs at the prodco, however, are also looking to expand upon the traditional linear television space. Our House Media is currently in talks with a “big international player” to collaborate on an OTT SVOD project that would feature original Our House Media content. He declined to provide further details but said the negotiations are “late-stage.”