BBC announces new digital innovation unit in Birmingham
The BBC has today announced a new digital innovation unit, the Guerrilla Group, to explore the next-generation of BBC content.
The Guerrilla Group will help us explore the next-generation of BBC content and services, finding new and creative ways to tell our stories to future audiences.
From later this year, a team of storytellers and engineers in Birmingham will begin to work across the BBC with a focus on engaging younger, more diverse audiences, and will be fully up and running from 2015. The group will have the creative freedom to produce experimental new forms of content for programmes and services, using the technology and approaches of the future.
Building on BBC Director-General Tony Hall’s creative vision for the BBC in the Midlands, outlined in November, the Guerrilla Group will operate at the heart of Birmingham’s creative community. The BBC is working together with the Creative City Partnership to enable the group to sit alongside, and work with, some of the city’s most dynamic and creative SMEs in Fazeley Studio’s, Digbeth.
The Guerrilla Group will act as a source of digital creativity at the BBC and as a catalyst for innovation in Birmingham. The team will work with the BBC’s R&D department, Connected Studio, BBC brands and audience members, as well as partnering and collaborating with a range of organisations, start-ups and SMEs. This is a small step towards supporting the city’s aspirations as a vibrant home for digital content businesses, which we hope will help to re-affirm the city’s status as a major driver of the UK economy, and in the longer term to make the area a natural home for innovators, entrepreneurs and wealth creators.
James Purnell, Director, Strategy and Digital at the BBC, said: “Innovation at the BBC has never stood still, from the birth of radio and TV, to the first steps into the digital world with BBC Micro Computers and Ceefax, through to more recent services like BBC iPlayer. The Guerrilla Group will help us explore the next-generation of BBC content and services, finding new and creative ways to tell our stories to future audiences.”
Tommy Nagra, Head of Business Development, BBC Birmingham, said: “This is a tremendous boost for our plans for the BBC in Birmingham and demonstrates our commitment to developing something new, innovative and future facing. Birmingham is the youngest city in Europe, making it the ideal new home and testing ground for our brand new digital content innovation team.”