SVG Sit-Down: Masstech’s Savva Mueller on the Impact of Masstech-SGL Merger on Sports-Production Community

The combination of technology and expertise will offer a full media-workflow platform

Last month brought the news that Masstech and Software Generation Ltd. (SGL) are merging to become Masstech Innovations. The combined entity, which will be run by Masstech President/CEO Joe French from UK headquarters, creates a major new asset/archive-management player in the broadcast and media industry.

SVG sat down with Savva Mueller, Masstech’s VP, product management and marketing, to discuss why the deal makes sense for both companies, how it will impact the industry (and the sports-production market specifically), and what opportunities he sees for the newly formed Masstech Innovations moving forward.

Savva Mueller: “There is a great need for solutions that make it easier to find and repurpose content and provide interfaces between disparate systems.”

Why does this deal make sense for Masstech? For SGL?
The founders of SGL made a decision to retire from the business, and they were happy to find an organization they could entrust with the company they had built. During the due-diligence process, we found that both companies shared the same values, culture, and vision, which made this a great fit for our customers and employees.

How do the two companies’ portfolios (both client and product) complement each other, and how will they be integrated in the coming months? What synergies are you looking to take advantage of?
While both companies provided solutions for asset and archive management, they were mostly focused on different use cases and different sets of customers, so they were rarely in competition for the same deals. The merger gives us an opportunity to use our extensive technology stacks and expertise to provide customers with a full media-workflow platform.

How do you believe this new entity will help to better serve the sports-production community?
One of the key selling points for this merger was that it would enable us to increase our focus on our customers. With our combined sales, engineering, and support groups, we will be able to do that at every level, from accelerating the time-to-market for new features to providing more responsive support. At the technology level, we understand that managing assets and their storage isn’t worth much unless you can make it easy for the content to be found, viewed, retrieved, and repurposed easily. We are uniquely positioned to help our customers get the most value out of their content, because our technology stack includes workflow automation, transcoding, metadata management, and rich integration with all the systems used in media production and publishing workflows, in addition to the archive- and storage-management capabilities that we are probably best known for.

Will there be any staff reductions or additions as a result of the merger?
Other than the SGL founders, who are retiring, we want to retain all of the existing staff from both Masstech and SGL. We are looking to grow the company, not to cut staff, so we are looking forward to making some key additions in the near future.

How are you seeing the MAM and storage markets evolving, and how do you believe Masstech Innovations can adapt/take advantage of these changes?
The biggest evolution that we’ve observed over the last year is that the cloud has become a viable alternative for anyone who has to manage video content. We have adapted our technology to support the cloud, both for hosting the systems themselves and as the location where the content will be stored. Whether you are interested in public, private, or hybrid cloud, we can provide rock-solid solutions.

In which markets do you see the greatest opportunity for growth and new verticals?
We feel like there is a lot of potential in the sports-production market. The size and volume of the assets are increasing, and the workflows are getting more complex. There is a great need for solutions that can reduce repetitive manual tasks, make it easier to find and repurpose content, and provide interfaces between disparate systems.

What can we expect from Masstech Innovations in the next 12 months in terms of the company’s direction?
We are excited about the potential to offer media-workflow tools as a managed service. That won’t replace what we do today, but it will be an option for customers who want the flexibility to ramp up or down their services or who prefer a pay-as-you-go model.

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