A social networking site aimed at new dads and a documentary about Western couples seeking IVF in India are among the projects to secure investment from a £600,000 fund.

After record numbers of applications, regional screen agency Screen WM has announced the 21 successful screen media companies which will receive investment from the Advantage Development Fund.

The fund, supported by Advantage West Midlands and the European Regional Development Fund, was re-launched in February to enable new and existing screen-based media companies to undertake research and development work prior to bringing new projects to the market.

This allows companies to develop projects to a higher standard before launching, to minimise the risk of failure.

Among the projects that will benefit from the fund are four new quiz shows, a PC game development for businesses to develop and train their sales staff and several feature films.

Screen WM chief executive Suzie Norton said: “The phenomenal interest in and demand for the Advantage Development Fund underlines the expansion of the screen media sector in the region in the last few years.

“Enabling companies to develop new ideas is the lifeblood of the industry and is vital to the survival and success of our screen media companies.”

The re-launched Advantage Development Fund has been expanded beyond film and broadcast to include the games, interactive and new media sectors. This was in response to the growth of the sectors within the screen media industry and the recent expansion of Screen WM to include digital media.

With the fund now fully committed, Screen WM will work closely with the twenty one companies throughout their period of research and development and will also help match their projects to potential production finance once completed.

Previous fund investments include Hotbed Media’s Win My Wage which has since been commissioned by Channel 4 to fill the coveted Deal or No Deal slot, and various feature film projects which are currently being courted by major industry financiers.