Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Interest already in Avalon studios...

Television New ZealandImage via Wikipedia
Interest already in Avalon Studios...

There's already interest in TVNZ's state of the art Avalon studios in Lower Hutt.

The state broadcaster is moving its Good Morning programme from Avalon to Auckland next year with the loss of 12 jobs, with the intention of quitting and selling the studios by June 2013.

Former Good Morning producer Debra Kelleher says because the studios are so superior, they're attractive to overseas investors.

"I know there are some big internationals that are looking at it currently," she told Newstalk ZB. "I'm working with one of the in particular so sometimes out of these sort of decisions come exciting new relationships."

Lower Hutt mayor Ray Wallace says TVNZ operating from Avalon Studios has been a barrier for potential new businesses but moving its operations out of Avalon opens up new economic opportunities for the city.

"Given that New Zealand is now becoming quite a popular destination for filming, we have an opportunity now to look at new industries coming in from overseas," he told Newstalk ZB. "In fact just yesterday I met with a Bollywood director talking about opportunities of filming here in Lower Hutt."

Mr Wallace says Avalon is an attractive proposition for overseas companies.

TVNZ says it's in early discussions with local and international interests. TVNZ CEO Rick Ellis says TVNZ's need for such large facilities has steadily decreased over the years due to outsourcing of programmes and the declining profitability of big-budget local shows.

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