The objective of the Performance Envelope Program is to encourage partnerships between broadcasters, television producers, and digital media producers to create convergent content that Canadian audiences can consume at any time and on the device of their choice. This program is part of the CMF’s Convergent Stream; so projects funded through this program must include content to be developed for distribution on at least two platforms, one of which must be television and the other, digital media. Through this program, the CMF allocates funding envelopes to English and French broadcasters in an amount that reflects their track record of supporting and airing Canadian programming. Broadcasters commit these funds to Canadian projects but the actual funding is paid directly to the producer. For further details, please consult the Performance Envelope Calculations appendix.
Performance Envelope commitments
In 2014-2015, Performance Envelope funds were fully committed to 437 projects. A total of 40 broadcast ownership groups and independent broadcasters received envelopes, an increase of 6 from last year. The CMF promoted diversity through a “new entrant” mechanism whereby 15 eligible independent broadcasters were allocated $50K each to allow them to meaningfully contribute to projects and begin earning credit toward building an envelope allocation in future years. The performance envelope program’s funding to production budget ratio was 4.5 to 1, a 5-year high. The smaller amounts of funding seen in 2013-2014 and 2014-2015 as shown in the chart above reflect a change in emphasis on funding through other convergent programs. A total of 96.1% of 2014-2015 performance envelope funds were directed toward television projects and 3.9% or $10.0M was utilized for second screen components. Funding to digital media out of the Performance Envelope program has increased by 72.4% over 2013-2014.
Performance Envelope broadcasters' use of genre allocations
The final percent share of Performance Envelope funding by genre can vary from the Board-approved shares set at the outset of the year since 50% of Performance Envelope allocations to broadcasters are deemed Flex amounts that can be directed to any of the four CMF-supported genres. Broadcaster ownership groups and individual broadcasters with total allocations of under $5.0M (both languages combined) were granted 100% genre flexibility.
The charts above show significant positive shifts in genre shares from original allocation to final 2014-2015 commitments in all English genres except Drama. French Children’s and Youth and Variety & Performing Arts also shown an increase in share of commitments. By contrast, notable negative shifts can be seen in English Drama and French Documentary.