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Content Innovation Awards 2018: the winners revealed

DAZN, BT, IBM Watson Media and the BBC were among the winners at the fourth annual Content Innovation Awards held in Cannes last night, just ahead of the MIPCOM TV market.

Some 200 people gathered in the Grand Salon of the Carlton Hotel to see 24 awards handed out to content producers, broadcasters, platform operators and technology companies that have excelled in innovation over the past year.

DAZN won the Advanced TV Service of the Year prize and the sports streaming service’s chief product officer, Ben Lavender, was on hand to pick up the Outstanding Digital Achievement Award.

Advanced TV Innovation of the Year went to IBM Watson Media for its artificial intelligence-powered closed captioning technology, while the BBC and Sky News shared the Live-Streaming Initiative of the Year gong for their coverage of sport and the Royal Wedding respectively.

The Over-the-top TV Service of the Year award went to the Neulion-powered NBA League Pass International, while BT received the TV Brand of the Year prize.

On the content front, Star Trek: Discovery was awarded Best Debut Drama Series; Peaky Blinders picked up the win Best Returning Drama Series for season four; and MasterChef was Entertainment Format of the Year, among a host of winners.

Notable mentions should also go to Keshet Media Group CEO, Avi Nir, who took home the Contribution to Content Award; Twofour Group CEO, Melanie Leach, who scooped the Lifetime Achievement Award; and YouView’s outgoing CEO Richard Halton who received the Services to Broadcasting Award.

The evening was hosted by journalist and broadcaster David McClelland, who specialises in technology, telecoms and consumer affairs and often appears on BBC One’s Rip Off Britain and ITV’s Good Morning Britain.

The full list of winners is presented below:

Advanced TV Innovation of the Year:  IBM Watson Media for IBM Watson Captioning

Advanced TV Service of the Year: DAZN

Best Debut Drama Series: CBS Television Studios for Star Trek: Discovery

Best Digital Original: Shaftesbury for The Carmilla Movie

Best Musical Format: CBS Television Studios for Drop The Mic

Best Returning Drama Series: Caryn Mandabach Productions and Tiger Aspect Productions for Peaky Blinders Season 4

Entertainment Format of the Year: Endemol Shine Group, Ziji Productions for MasterChef

Factual Entertainment Programme of the Year: Endemol Shine Group for Family Food Fight

Factual TV Project of the Year: CPL Productions for Old People’s Home for 4 Year Olds

Live-Streaming Initiative of the Year: BBC Sport for BBC Sport Live Streaming; and Sky News for Royal Wedding: Who’s Who Live Application (joint winners)

Next Gen Advertising Award: Mirriad for In-Video Ad Unit

OTT TV Service of the Year: Neulion for NBA League Pass International

OTT TV Technology of the Year: Limelight Networks for Realtime Streaming solution

Series Launch of the Year: AMC Networks International for The Terror Season 1; and Caryn Mandabach Productions and Tiger Aspect Productions for Peaky Blinders Season 4 (joint winners)

Best Use of Social Media: Gloob / Globosat for Miraculous’ campaign and promotion

The UX Award: Massive for Massive AXIS; and Zappware for WIND VISION (joint winners)

The YouTube Award: Barcroft Media for Barcroft TV

TV App of the Year: BBC Sport for the BBC Sport App for connected TV

TV Brand of the Year: BT for BT TV

Virtual Reality Initiative of the Year: BBC Sport for BBC Sport VR – FIFA World Cup Russia 2018

Contribution to Content Award: Keshet Media Group CEO, Avi Nir

Lifetime Achievement Award: Twofour Group CEO, Melanie Leach

Outstanding Digital Achievement Award: DAZN chief product officer, Ben Lavender

Services to Broadcasting Award: YouView CEO, Richard Halton