The BBC has selected AFPTV as a key supplier of English-language video news, significantly expanding its relationship with the Paris-headquartered international news agency AFP.
Under a multi-year agreement starting April 1 2017, the British broadcaster will receive edited and live video from AFPTV for use on all its platforms: television channels, websites and mobile applications, as well as radio for audio production. According to reports in the UK City AM newspaper, the AFP deal replaces the BBC’s longstanding contract with Associated Press. The paper says: “News staff have been informed that they will no longer be permitted to use AP video, pictures and wire copy from later this week. Fran Unsworth, head of the World Service, today told staff in an email that the BBC was instead starting a “new relationship” with Agence France Presse.”
AFPTV, the video news division of AFP, has developed over 15 years into a major international player with a monthly English-language production of 2,500 edited videos and 200 live videos from around the world. The BBC already receives AFP’s photo and English, French and Arabic text news services.
Jonathan Munro (right), the BBC’s Head of Newsgathering, said: “We are delighted to be working even more closely with AFP in the years ahead. The BBC’s coverage of the world will benefit enormously from the growing firepower of AFP including its strengths in regions which are underserved by the mainstream media. We hope that the BBC’s new relationship with AFP will prove enduring and positive for both organisations.”
Emmanuel Hoog (pictured), chairman and chief executive of AFP, described the partnership as “an emblematic recognition of everyone’s efforts to make video a top priority”. He added: “It encourages us in our long-term investment strategy to extend and consolidate AFPTV’s unique positioning in Europe and worldwide.”
According to the Paris-based agency, AFPTV has developed rapidly since its launch in France in 2002. It started international news production in 2007 and then began a process of substantial expansion on every continent from 2011. AFPTV is now at the forefront in covering top world news as well as offering its clients in-depth features, file images and stock shots in six languages. Since 2015, it has successfully developed live video production. Journalists working for AFPTV have notably won Rory Peck awards for coverage of the migrant crisis in Greece (Will Vassilopoulos – 2015-2016); rebel-held Aleppo (Zein Al-Rifai – 2014-15); and civil war in the Central African Republic (Pacome Pabandji – 2013-14). In addition to the BBC, AFPTV has some 300 clients, a number that is steadily increasing. The further development of AFPTV is a strategic priority for the agency.