October 05th, 2021 | by Mathieu Gayet

The 9th edition of the Geneva Digital Market unveils its first themes and guests

The 9th Geneva Digital Market (GDM), which will be held from November 8 to 12, has revealed the first half of its program of lectures and workshops for which it is already possible to apply for accreditation. Placed at the heart of the Geneva International Film Festival (November 5 to 14) and this year held in the former Plaza cinema, this unique think tank in Switzerland will feature a high value-added hybrid event with, among others, Sarah Ellis from the Royal Shakespeare Company (UK), Robin McNicholas from Marshmallow Laser Feast (UK) and Sander Saar from Red Bull Media House and Moonbug (EE). As a forum for sharing knowledge and know-how, the GDM invites professionals to observe the technologies that will shape the future of the audiovisual and creative industries.

The GDM will position Geneva at the forefront of innovation, hosting more than a hundred international speakers online or in the legendary Plaza movie theater, on this occasion accessible thanks to the support of the Plaza Foundation. The hybrid format of the event will be powered by the equipment of Geneva-based XR studio Appia.

Sami Arpa, CEO of Largo (CH), and John Canning, Executive Producer, New Media, and Experiential at Digital Domain (US), will discuss the possible applications of advanced technologies in independent productions. A discussion will be held on VOD distribution and monetization strategies with Mitch Mallon, CEO of Stadium Media (US), and Sander Saar, Strategy and Growth Consultant at Red Bull Media House and Moonbug, formerly The Walt Disney Company (EE).


Two high-profile French companies will feature at the FOCUS ON NEW TECHNOLOGIES FOR AUDIOVISUAL SECTOR: MatchTune, founded by jazzman André Manoukian, represented by its CEO Philippe Guillaud, and David-Alexandre Chanel, co-founder of Theoriz Studio. The transdisciplinary discussion RIGHT HERE RIGHT NOW will host a large panel of experts to discuss the paradigmatic changes brought about by the pandemic: Sarah Ellis, Director of Digital Development at the Royal Shakespeare Company (UK) and Robin McNicholas, Director of the award-winning experiential collective Marshmallow Laser Feast (UK) – which contributes, among others, with Atlas V, to the immersive project in development EVOLVER co-produced by Terrence Malick and Edward R. Pressman.

The content of the event comprising the Swiss Interactive Sessions (SIS) and XR Coproduction Sessions as well as a second part of talks and lectures will be revealed during the press conference on Thursday, October 14. Accreditations to attend the talks (online or in person) are now open on the GIFF website.

Virtual Switzerland, the Foundation for Professional Training in Cinema and Audiovisual Media FOCAL, the Fondation romande pour le cinéma Cinéforom, the ArtTech Foundation, the Association romande de la production audiovisuelle AROPA and Cinébulletin are partners of the GDM (Geneva Digital Market).

Le Plaza © HEAD - Michel Giesbrecht

Geneva Digital Market: Talks

AUDIENCE ENGAGEMENT AND MONETIZATION ON VOD, DIGITAL PLATFORMS AND BEYOND (November 8) In association with the Foundation for professional training in cinema and audiovisual media FOCAL

Despite the presence of numerous digital distribution platforms on the market, independent producers lack skills and knowledge to make the best use of them. Thanks to the intervention of several international experts, this programme proposes to remedy this lack and to learn how to launch and manage their films through this new distribution medium.

Speakers: Sander Saar Strategy and Growth Consultant, Red Bull Media House, Moonbug, former The Walt Disney Company (EE), David Mühle, CEO of Playpilot (SE), Mitch Mallon, CEO of Stadium Media (US), Birgit Karus, CEO of Noh Productions (EE), Ben Johnson, CEO of Gruvi (DK), Agustina Lumi, Head of Content & Marketing at usheru (IE)

Moderator: Sten-Kristian Saluveer, Founder and CEO of Storytek Creative Hub (EE)


Technological changes in art practices intensified during the pandemic. Which immersive and interactive technologies developed during this period will be incorporated by mainstream media?

Speakers: Sarah Ellis, Director of Digital Development at Royal Shakespeare Company (UK), Robin McNicholas, Co-Founder and Creative Director at Marshmallow Laser Feast (UK), Georg Bleikolm, Composer, Producer and Director at A Fool’s Boost and Cie Across (CH), David Colombini & Marc Dubois, Co-founders of Fragment.in and INT studio (CH)

Moderator: Laetitia Bochud, Director of Virtual Switzerland (CH)


UNDERSTANDING AND APPLYING INNOVATIVE TECHNOLOGY TO THE INDEPENDENT PRODUCTIONS (November 9) In association with the Foundation for professional training in cinema and audiovisual media FOCAL

Producers find, in technological innovation from AI to data management, a way to make their work more efficient. This program provides the opportunity to practice in collaboration with specialized companies to adapt these new approaches to traditional workflows.

Speakers: John Canning, Executive Producer, New Media & Experiential at Digital Domain (US), Sami Arpa, CEO of Largo (CH), Dirk Hofmann, Co-Founder, CEO of DAIN Studios (DE), Wolf Bosse, Expert in Film and Innovation Management (DE), Jon Morris, CEO, Co-Founder of NOWHERE (US), Maria Tanjala, Co-Founder of FilmChain (UK), Nimrod Shanit, CEO of Blimey (IL/CA)

Moderator: Sten-Kristian Saluveer, Founder & CEO of Storytek Creative Hub (EE)

FOCUS ON NEW TECHNOLOGIES FOR AUDIOVISUAL SECTOR (November 10) In association with ArtTech Foundation

In the 5 years of its existence, the ArtTech Foundation has demonstrated its role in promoting technological innovation in the arts. From the use of predictive algorithms to the creation of 3D animation or mapping, it presents 5 promising technologies for the future of the audiovisual and film industry.

Speakers: Nathalie Pichard, Executive Director & Curator at ArtTech Foundation (CH), Philippe Guillaud, Co-founder and CEO of MatchTune (FR/US), Yassine Tahi, CEO of Kinetix (FR), Edgar Hemery, CEO of Embodme (FR), David-Alexandre Chanel, Co-founder of Theoriz studio (FR), Sami Arpa, CEO of Largo (CH)

Moderator: Nathalie Pichard, Executive Director & Curator at ArtTech Foundation (CH)

Accreditations are open!

Accreditation is reserved for directors, creators, distributors, film representatives, digital and other festival industries, journalists, media professionals as well as students of film and audiovisual arts. The Festival reserves the right to refuse any application for accreditation.

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