OTT.X to Host Career and Leadership Development Summit

OTT.X on July 28 announced plans to host its first-ever Career and Leadership Development Summit on Aug. 12, using an online format similar to its popular “OTT.X Online Live” sessions.

The summit will feature three components, including a conference session with career and leadership development presentations delivered by successful executives; a series of informal discussion sessions between industry executives and conference attendees; and a “happy-hour” networking session.

Steve Nickerson

Featured speakers include industry veterans Steve Nickerson, formerly of Warner Bros. Home Entertainment and Toshiba Corp.; Jason Peterson, chairman of the GoDigital Media Group; and Michele Edelman, head of growth with Premiere Video.

Other speakers include Teresa Philips, CEO of Spherex; Narendra Reddy, EVP and GM of The Africa Channel; and Paulette Pantoja, CEO of Blu; Jill Allen, SVP of digital distribution for Sony Pictures; Beth Anderson, AVP of digital strategy and business development for BBC Studios; Allison Martin, senior manager of content planning for BBC Studios; Kristen Bedno, director of domestic distribution and marketing for Vision Films; Lise Romanoff, managing director and CEO of worldwide distribution for Vision Films; and Lonni Silverman, director of client services, for Sony Pictures.

“The goal of the summit is to help prepare an inclusive population of professionals interested in advancing in business and technical roles in the entertainment industry and to provide opportunities to develop their leadership skills, contacts and confidence,” said Mark Fisher, OTT.X president and CEO. “Supporting the growth and professional development of future leaders and the diversity of those holding leadership positions is vital to our industry’s continued success. Our first Leadership Development Summit will provide a platform for leaders to share valuable insights and for a diverse community of professionals of all levels to connect and learn from each other.”

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Jason Peterson

Fisher also will speak, as will Eric Hanson, OTT.X’s VP of industry leadership.

To create an inclusive and diverse community of participants, women and minorities are especially encouraged to register and attend, Fisher said. The morning conference portion of the event is free for all OTT industry professionals. Afternoon discussion and networking sessions are free to any employee of an OTT.X member organization.

The conference is being hosted by OTT.X’s Leadership Development Foundation (LDF), an organization dedicated to the vision of a diverse and inclusive business and technical workforce in the OTT video entertainment industry, supported by a broad range of career and leadership development opportunities. The LDF is overseen by a steering committee with representatives from content providers, channels, retailers and service providers in the OTT video industry.

For more information and to register visit the OTT.X website.

EMA Elects Officers, Appoints Board Members

Cameron Douglas, VP of home entertainment, Fandango, has been re-elected chairman of the home entertainment trade group the Entertainment Merchants Association (EMA). Douglas will be serving his second term as chairman.

Joining Douglas as officers are vice chair Suyin Lim, senior director, content acquisitions and partnerships, PlayStation Video; secretary Pedro Guiterrez Jr., director, digital stores movies and TV business and category management, Microsoft Corp.; and treasurer Michele Edelman, head of growth, Premiere Digital Services.

Eric Opeka

Bill Kotzman, Google/YouTube’s partner product manager, TV and Film; Erick Opeka, president, Cinedigm Digital Networks; and Jason Peterson, CEO of GoDigital Medial Group, will also serve on the association’s executive committee as at-large members.

Amazon returns to the EMA’s board, now represented by senior product manager Jude Fitzmorris.

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Other returning board members are Amit Balan, head of marketing at Vudu, and Marty Graham, SVP at ComScore.

Three members newly appointed board members are Opeka, Edelman and Elissa Brown, VP of finance and operations at Movies Anywhere.

“The companies on EMA’s board of director reflect the variety of delivery mechanisms and business models in our vibrant industry,” said Mark Fisher, EMA president and CEO. “Each director brings an important perspective, and their wealth of experience will benefit the membership as EMA continues to be the forum for the home entertainment industry.”

The EMA is a not-for-profit international trade association. Members include digital retailers, MVPDs, AVOD and SVOD networks and channels, platforms, companies creating and/or distributing content for these channels of distribution, and companies providing services or technology for the use of others in this community. EMA was established in April 2006 through the merger of the Video Software Dealers Association (VSDA) and the Interactive Entertainment Merchants Association (IEMA).

ContentBridge Moves Huge TV Catalog to Belgian Telecom

ContentBridge, a leading digital supply chain company, recently encoded and delivered Studio 100 TV’s entire catalog to Proximus, the largest telecommunications company in Belgium, with specific versions optimized for television as well as the new Studio 100 Go mobile application.

Studio 100 is a top children’s TV channel, with its programming distributed throughout Europe. The announcement was made in early June 2018 by ContentBridge General Manager Manfred Van Ursel.

Van Ursel said ContentBridge supply chain software chain successfully encoded and delivered Studio 100’s entire catalog, which consists of more than 55,000 minutes of SD and HD programming, in less than 45 days with peaks of up to 5,500 minutes per day.

“I think it’s wonderful that Studio 100 has the confidence in ContentBridge to make these kinds of deals and trust us to get the job done in such short notice,” he said. “Retrieving, encoding, packaging and delivering almost 600 hours of film and television to diverse specifications for different platforms, complete with artwork and metadata is not an easy thing, and to do that in such a short time in an automated fashion is a real testament to our scalable technology and our commitment to help our clients get things done.”

In related news, Studio 100 has re-signed on with ContentBridge. ContentBridge has partnered with Studio 100 for digital deliveries since 2014.

ContentBridge is a leading provider of digital supply chain software solutions to studios, networks, and retailers in the media industry.  It is owned by GoDigital Media Group, a media and technology company focused on intellectual property rights management. The company  says its flexible task-based workflow engine can be configured to accommodate nearly any business process. Automated capabilities include distribution readiness assessment, ingest and conform, digital asset management, and orchestration and automation of media and meta-data delivery to any business partner anywhere in the world.  ContentBridge software is available in the cloud or on-premise and is an approved “encoding” vendor for all major digital retailers.

Studio 100 was founded in 1996 by Gert Verhulst and Hans Bourlon. The company has a wide range of productions in family and child entertainment: television, movies, books, magazines, CDs, merchandising, owned broadcasting channels, digital platforms, shows and theater productions. The theme park division of Studio 100 runs six popular theme parks: four in Belgium (Plopsaland and Plopsaqua at De Panne, Plopsa Indoor Hasselt and Plopsa Coo), one in the Netherlands (Plopsa Indoor Coevorden) and one in Germany (Holiday Park).

The new Studio 100 GO is a mobile application for kids that contains a wide range of Studio 100 productions. There are numerous free TV shows, music clips, games and e-books of Maya the Bee, Heidi, Bumba, K3, and Vic the Viking – as well as exclusive content for subscribers. The app is available on iOS and Android and can be downloaded for free.