Grass Valley—Graham Sharp, Senior Vice President, Corporate Development

Q. What broad technology trends do you think will be front-and-center at IBC2012?

I think a huge focus will be on multiplatform distribution. With the explosion in connected devices Broadcasters everywhere are trying to figure out how to serve and make additional revenues from these platforms without adding complexity, at a time when they are seeing reducing incomes as advertising revenues get spread across more channels and media outlets.

At Grass Valley we believe that the technology is finally advanced enough to enable post production, production and distribution to merge into a single collaborative platform, providing multiple format outputs and increasing efficiency. We call it “Non-linear Content Production.”

“Non-linear content production” will enable producers to create content once and distribute it across multiple platforms faster and more efficiently than ever before.

Q. Any thoughts on how the current economic climate will affect the show?

I think it will be a good show. As I mentioned earlier, the current economic climate is forcing broadcasters to look for solutions that create efficiencies and reduce costs, while at the same time offering the potential to serve new platforms and create new revenue streams.

It is an exciting time; nonlinear production helps broadcasters solve these issues and with Grass Valleys’ years of experience in storage and IT infrastructure we believe we can help lead the industry into the Internet era.

Q. What's new that you will show at IBC2012 and that broadcasters should look for there?

We will be showcasing end-to-end workflows within the three segments we focus on: News, Live and Distribution, featuring a host of new products from cameras through to playout.

In addition, we will be showing several new production tools including new versions of the K2 Dyno slow-motion controller and EDIUS, the industry’s fastest and most versatile editing platform.

Grass Valley STRATUS, our media workflow application framework is a key component in each of these solutions and we will be showing a host of new features and tools as we continue the transition to end-to-end nonlinear file-based workflows.

Q. How is your new product offering different from what's available on the market?

Grass Valley is the only supplier that can offer complete workflow solutions from camera to playout, along with the services required to successfully install and maintain them. Besides our best-in-class switchers, servers and cameras, Grass Valley STRATUS is really setting the bar in terms of workflow management; and the K2 Dyno S replay controller is faster, more agile and has a smaller footprint than anything else currently on the market. And, did you know — EDIUS is the most-used broadcast news editor in the world?

Q. Where are you based, and how many employees do you have? Anything else we should know about your company?

Grass Valley is headquartered in San Francisco, Calif., and employs approximately 1,200 staff. For more than half a century Grass Valley has been the leader in broadcasting solutions, offering our customers the latest innovations and the best performance. Unmatched in the industry, our range of services and solutions leverage the economies of scale of the IT industry with our proprietary core knowledge of media processing and storage.

Q. Last year I asked whether 3D was Hope, Hype or In Between. This year I want to know similar thoughts on ‘social media and broadcasters’.

A key differentiator for broadcasters is going to be how they utilize the opportunities provided by social media. Using nonlinear production workflows provides broadcasters with the opportunity to easily insert the metadata that enables content to seamlessly integrate with social media. We are already seeing people posting comments about their favorite TV shows on Facebook and Twitter.

The ability to create links to shows and additional content on social networking sites will eventually create lucrative, new advertising streams for broadcasters.

Q. How many years have you been going to the IBC show and what's your fondest memory? What's your favourite restaurant or pub?

Grass Valley has been exhibiting at IBC since the beginning and I personally have never missed a year, although with a couple of different companies. My fondest personal memory is from my years in a startup, where we had no money and a bunch of us stayed in an apartment and travelled around on cycles. It seemed less stressful than life in the big corporations! My favourite pub in the past was probably the Jolly Sailor. Now, it is De Wildeman, in the alley behind the Crown Plaza. It’s also across the road from rather a good Indian Restaurant.