Factual formats in China's advanced internet ecosystem: case Bilibili

Tuesday 26th May 9:00 UCT

Bo Zhang, Head of international Co-production for bilibili.com

Bo Zhang, Head of international Co-production and a multi award-winning documentary producer, focusing on co-financing and co-producing international factual content for bilibili.com, a platform embraced by more than 100 million Chinese young audience and ACG fans.

For the past 9 years, Bo Zhang has produced documentaries with top-notch broadcasters like Discovery, NatGeo, NHK, History Channel, CCTV- Documentary Channel and France TV, with world-renowned production houses like NHNZ, Beach House, InFocusAsia and Roast Beef Productions.

With its 100 million+ users Bilibili is sometimes called China’s Youtube, but it has a unique user culture where Bilibili’s members are its primary creators and videos have no intrusive ads before or during its videos. Bilibili came known originally as the platform for anime and comics related content, and also as a hotbed for China’s meme culture. More recently the network has gained acclaim for original documentary content that appeals to an emerging class of foodies and travelers. It is also investing in content creators with a particular emphasis on the current trend for vlogs in the Chinese market.

Bilibili is a platform where brands seeking to reach its young, hip audiences have to be savvier in their efforts to gain and maintain their attention, either by launching their own channels with entertaining content or through collaborations with established creators.

Bo Zhang Profile

Tips and tricks from a format veteran

Tuesday 19th May 10:00 UCT

Jan Salling, Head of BBC Studios Nordics Formats and Production

Jan Salling started his TV career at Nordisk Film in Copenhagen, where he served as a production and floor manager on the classic game show Wheel of Fortune.  Today Jan has 30 years of broad TV experience, ranging from producing and executive producing all genrés to international management and distribution of TV rights and formats. He has worked in senior production and sales roles for various production companies in the Nordics as well as previously heading formats sales for both Zodiak, Banijay and Nordic World.

In March 2019 Jan Salling joined BBC Studios Nordics, where he is in charge of all formats and productions in the Nordics. This includes titles like Strictly Come Dancing, Bake Off, Top Gear and many more.

Jan Salling has been on the board of FRAPA since September 2012 and now serve as Co-chairman of FRAPA.  

Jan Salling_Black and white

Discussing the development landscape for new pop music talent in China.

Tuesday 21st April 15:00 UCT

John Stratton, the co-founder and ceo of FutureONE:
Creating artist exposure through
internet platforms and tv-formats.

John Stratton partnered with veteran Chinese music industry producer & label head, Zeng Yu, to create a new Chinese music entertainment company called FutureONE Entertainment - backed by leading Chinese talent company, Mountaintop Entertainment (known for representing A-list film stars like AngelaBaby and Zhoudongyu). FutureONE discovers, develops, and promotes new domestic Chinese talent for the world stage, utilizing international relationships and artist development expertise.

Prior to founding FutureONE, Stratton was a talent manager at music management legend David Sonenberg's boutique firm 'DAS Communications' in New York City, playing a key role in DAS artist development and strategy. The management roster included The Black Eyed Peas, Fergie, John Legend, Sean Paul, Kesha, Pixie Lott, Taylor Momsen, and superstar producer Toby Gad. After DAS, Stratton joined Tribal Brands marketing in California as Head of Entertainment, where he developed global entertainment marketing campaigns for brands including Shell and JP Morgan Chase.


How can tv-producers approach fast growing SVOD-market?

Tuesday 14th April 13:00 UCT

The founder of NewBe to share their talent-first strategy in an exclusive webinar.

The speaker on Tuesday will be the founder of NewBe,  Jeroen Koopman. Koopman founded Amsterdam based production company NewBe in 2011.

NewBe, with original films and series on Netflix, Amazon, Insight and Videoland is the only Dutch production company fully focusing on developing and producing shows for SVOD platforms. NewBe is part of the top-100 fastest growing companies in The Netherlands.

Jeroen SF square

Concerts from quarantine: How COVID19 drove a Chinese music festival online; attracted an audience of 15 million

Monday 23rd March 10:00 UCT

Organizer to share secrets of their success in an exclusive webinar.

The speaker on Monday in the first webinar will be one of China’s best-known entertainment industry organizers: Shen Yue, partner and VP of the Modern Sky Entertainment, the organizer of China’s largest music festivals.

Along with the support of entertainers, fans and Bilibili - China’s leading internet platform among generation Z, his team created online festival Strawberry Z with the slogan “I’m at home too”. The festival, which garnered an audience of more than 15 million, was a way to support artists during the lockdown while bringing people together online and breaking the boredom of being stuck at home.

The festival, organized as a charity, was also innovative in ways of monetization. China leads the world in the adoption of online payments and its market now offers many interesting new business models on how to monetize content through crowdfunding, micropayments and e-commerce. Models that other markets could now learn from. Shen Yue will share the experience of the production, followed by Q&A and open discussion.

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EARS and Up To Level Media have launched a new weekly webinar series “format+ed” that focuses on the innovations in cutting-edge content formats in user generated content, media production, e-commerce and live entertainment.

The mission is to bring together the top talents of the entertainment industry and create new worldwide multi-industry collaboration.


Format+ed Founders

The webinar is organised by Format+ed which is founded by by seasoned entertainment industry professionals Anssi Rimpelä and Jani Joenniemi.

Format+ed founders

Anssi Rimpelä

Director, producer, and operational head of departments like sales and development, Anssi Rimpela dedicated his career to the betterment of TV and visual media.

Rimpela has worked on localizing some of the world’s biggest entertainment brands and bringing them to the screens of Nordic audiences.

Under Rimpela’s supervision Finland has seen formats like Popstars, Idols, X-factor, Got Talent, The Block, Paradise Hotel, Fort Boyard, Farmer wants a wife, Dinner Date, The Farm, The Celebrity Splash, Sing-a-long, How clean is your house, Best Singers and many more.

Contact: anssi.rimpela (at) uptolevel.com



Jani Joenniemi


Entrepreneur, producer, manager and marketer in the cultural and entertainment industry with 15+ years of history in connecting the markets of Europe and Asia. Diverse experience in managing venues, festivals, tours, conferences, trade missions and other large and small productions. Jani also works with media and entertainment companies as well as brands helping them with the right market-entry and content commerce strategy to China.
Current projects include EARS on Asia international conference series for the entertainment industry and Bigger Picture - export program for Finnish film and TV production companies to China.