Carmela Asero (EBU)

Running from 2017 to 2019, the EU-funded MediaRoad project boosted the development of a nurturing ecosystem for media innovation in Europe. Building on the experience of leading that project, the EBU is now part of STADIEM (, another Horizon 2020 project, which kicked off in October 2020.

STADIEM offers a competitive acceleration and co-creation programme bringing start-ups, scale-ups, investors and media organizations together to foster the development of next-generation media solutions. (Update by the editor: the project's second open call closes on 28 Febuary).

Start-ups and scale-ups

Throughout its four-stage programme of matching, developing, integrating and piloting, STADIEM provides start-ups and scale-ups with relevant skills, information and knowledge (including market and consumer specifics), insights into available funding and scaling opportunities, as well as connections with corporate networks. The EBU’s role is to lead the task of ecosystem engagement. This involves engaging with stakeholders across Europe to connect promising start-ups/scale-ups active in the media sector with a large network of established public service media organizations interested in adopting and deploying their products and solutions.

Alongside the EBU, the project consortium involves six other partners: EBU Member VRT, the coordinating partner; Media City Bergen (MCB), a leading international hub for media and technology innovation; Next Media Accelerator (NMA), which leads a pan-European start-up programme for innovation in media; Storytek, an accelerator and creative innovation hub with deep audiovisual sector knowledge; F6S, the world’s largest community for tech founders and growth companies; and Martel, an SME with over 20 years of experience in managing research and innovation projects and their communication.

The acceleration and co- creation framework consisting of the four partner hubs (VRT, MCB, NMA and Storytek) aims to give the selected start-ups/scale-ups the best possible support in Europe in upscaling. The current batch of 16 start-ups/scale-ups that are co-creating media solutions with their corporate partner covers a range of relevant and challenging topics. The majority work on topics related to data, AI, machine learning and synthetic media (Ceretai, Smartocto, Web64,, Datavillage, Utelly, Trensition, FanSifter, Visualyst) or content creation and distribution (Cutnut, On-Hertz, Frameright, The others are developing solutions on archiving (The Chainless) and monetization (Nowtilus, FilmChain).

A few examples

Here are three examples of partnerships being supported through STADIEM:

  • With VRT, Ceretai is working on a platform that automatically analyses diversity in audiovisual content. By measuring diversity and equality in a transparent way, media organizations can take informed decisions and strengthen an inclusive and equal media offering. Ceretai is also in discussions on a possible collaboration with the EBU’s diversity, equity and inclusion team.
  • In making more content accessible to a wider audience, the use of language dialects becomes a barrier. In collaboration with Russmedia (Austria), aims to improve dialect recognition for content creators, to support them in better transcription, subtitling and translation.
  • The Chainless uses AI to recognize faces, scenes, segments and texts very accurately. They are working with ProSiebenSat.1 (Germany) on classifying and archiving audiovisual content, which, as a result, can be automatically tagged and personalized for the end user.

STADIEM’s second open call is scheduled for publication in December 2021. Follow the project’s social media channels to stay updated.


This article was first published in issue 50 of tech-i magazine.

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