NAB Perspectives: Tata Communications’ Wheeler on Content Globalization

Julian Wheeler, VP of global media and entertainment for Tata Communications, sees an increasing trend for broadcasters, including sports broadcasters, to increase their global reach by expanding to new markets and trying to hit new platforms within those markets.

“What we’re seeing is this increasing globalization of content owners and broadcasters, in country reach as well as platform reach,” Wheeler says. “We’re seeing an interesting mix of people interested in making that happen, including content owners, broadcasters, and even on the postproduction side. People want to improve how fast they can provide the services.”

A key aspect of this trend toward globalization, he observes, is how fast they can help the content owner get the content onto the new platforms in those new geographies.

“What we’re also seeing from a CDN perspective is content owners’ wanting to bypass the more traditional supply-chain setup of going through broadcast platforms to reach a viewer,” Wheeler explains. “We’re doing more work on the CDN side to enable the rights owners and content owners to go straight to viewers.

“The big questions are, can I go straight to the consumer, can I reach new markets and platforms, and can I do it cost-effectively?” he continues. “Some of the new platforms are seen as a competitive advantage and might add value on top of a core broadcast, but they don’t necessarily pay for themselves. So can I do multiple platforms cost-effectively and still make money overall? That is the big question.”

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