DISCOVERY INTERN: DISCOVERY HQ OF ASIA
An insight into the team here in Singapore.

Singapore has been a treat so far. My favourite part? The people. The soul of Singapore is truly its people and I’ve enjoyed learning about their culture and how they view the world. I had spent a bit of time roaming around Sentosa Island, Marina Bay, and Bugis, getting an in-depth feel of the place and what it means to be Singaporean.

Today however was different. I wasn’t meeting with the locals or enjoying light shows down at Gardens by the Bay, I was catching a taxi to Media Circle to meet with the team who oversees the entire Discovery Networks in Asia. I met with creative directors, human resources, Head of Products and even the President himself!

The first thing I noticed was the diversity of the team, they all came from different walks of life, but again shared the same common interests: people, travel, curiosity and food.

I spent some time learning about the challenges they face and how it differs from what we, as Australasians, may experience back home. When it comes to broadcasting back in New Zealand and Australia, I’m sure we’re all familiar with Sky and Foxtel, which for the most part are the main providers for subscription TV. Here in Asia however, there are often 20+ in each country, 100s of channels and to top it off, pirates. I’m not talking about sea pirates with eye patches, but actual people who BUILD satellites in their backyards, point them up to the sky and steal entire channels this way!

After jumping from team to team, I spent time with the heads of departments and the President. They all spoke about a time of change that cable TV had never seen before; the transition from TV to the internet. It’s common for anyone who falls under the millennial age group to not watch TV, with options like Netflix and YouTube, and this was their current challenge.

Finally, while I sat down with these different people from all around the globe, I asked them of their stories. I was curious to know how people in such influential positions got to where they are. It was inspiring to hear their answers; they all literally started from the bottom. Jobs like runners, cleaners, and unpaid associates were all common titles, they also swore that hard work and surrounding yourself with like-minded people were crucial factors in their success. It’s always been inspiring for me to hear people’s stories, you just never know where they had come from and what they had been through to become the versions of themselves we see today.

Arthur Bastings, President and Managing Director, Discovery Networks Asia-Pacific

It’s now my last day here in Singapore! What an experience it was to kick off the global journey here… one country down, four more to go.

Check out video from my travels around Singapore below.

- Ben Mikha