Avid Technology will not exhibit at The NAB Show in 2008, the company announced Tuesday.
Until now, the editing solutions giant has had a major presence at NAB, with sponsorship of events including the popular post-production conference. The company said Digidesign, its audio division, also will not exhibit, but Avid is evaluating what other presence Digidesign will have at the confab.
Avid will still be in Vegas in April to meet with customers and will continue to sponsor the Broadcast Education Association conference within the show. It also plans to sponsor the PBS Technology Conference, which takes place prior to NAB.
Instead, Avid is introducing a "major shift" in the way it serves its professional customers, and is promising a "blitz" new user-community initiatives, technical support programs, highly personalized events, and innovative product announcements in 2008. Avid will offer more details on the campaign in February.
The new approach "will be designed to make it easier for customers, prospects and the media to interact with the company," the company said. A spokeswoman said the decision not to exhibit was not based on the cost savings but rather on the company's revised strategy.
Nancy Hawthorne, Avid's interim CEO, discussed Avid's customer relations issues at an investors' event Nov. 5. She said Avid needed to deepen relations with its enterprise customers and she conceded that some products had been rushed to market, resulting in some dissatisfaction among customers.
"We are always evaluating the most effective ways to build closer relationships with our customers and keep pace with the ever-changing media market. Over the past few months, we've been collecting data from all of our constituents, and the findings have been clear — we need to connect with users in new ways," said Graham Sharp, vice president and general manager of Avid's Video division.
NAB spokesman Dennis Wharton said Avid was among the top 10 renters of space at the conference.
Anyone interested in receiving updates on Avid's new customer-focused initiatives in 2008 can register for e-mail alerts at www.avid.com/we-are-listening