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So if Avid goes under, then what?

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Andrew KimerySo if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 2, 2012 at 11:44:58 pm

Branching off from the thread about Avid selling off its consumer line of products and seemingly gloomy financial outlook (http://forums.creativecow.net/readpost/335/38711), what happens if Avid can't turn it around in the next year or two?

Do you think a larger company, like Blackmagic, will buy Avid and keep it going as a subsidiary? Will Avid just die meaning that FCP Legend and Avid MC would've both EOL'd in a 24-36mo window? If that's the case obviously people will be able to coast for a while but this really makes the field wide open for FCPX, PPro and I'd say even Lightworks and Media 100 would have a real shot at upping their market share.

Some people complain that there's too much armchair speculation of Apple so why don't we take this great opportunity to put Avid in the cross hairs.



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Gary HuffRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 2, 2012 at 11:57:20 pm

I think Blackmagic taking over AVID would be interesting. It would be a loss for sure if we lost AVID, but we still have Final Cut (as long as Apple continues to improve it), Premiere CS6 (which I love), Vegas, Edius, ect. ect.

We still have it pretty good.


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Chris ConleeRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 4:59:31 am

Having recently tried to use PP CS6 for a Red RAW feature film, I can tell you that nobody (with the possible exception of Lightworks) is ready for Hollywood primetime. There were so many things I tried to do in PP that I was told (and it was confirmed by the brass) simply couldn't be done yet: like matching back to audio timecode, or aux timecode. AAF exports from merged clips, no shared projects. Properly sorting picons in bin view. Not to mention the niggly little inconveniences, such as the trim tool not working the way I want it to. For all the groaning about Avid, the fact is there simply IS NOT another package with the depth of features for Hollywood narratives.

If Avid goes under, Media Composer would definitely find a home somewhere, because it's simply the only tool available that does everything Media Composer does and Hollywood has come to expect.

Chris Conlee


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Craig SeemanRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 12:02:33 am

MC/Symphony is a valuable commodity but it's in a very small niche along with Unity/Isis. ProTools is also valuable and I suspect has bigger base. Somebody will pick those up. Although I'm honestly not sure about Unity/Isis.

That Avid is pretty much debt free is a noteworthy reason why they've been able to sustain the loses for so long. Of course they could do a major rethink on their business model.

Adobe has had some bumps along the way as well but their management seems very creative when it comes to making changes in their business model. They also have a deep product mix so some divisions can sustain transition periods.

Avid doesn't seem to have much wiggle room beyond their lack of debt. Do they have a magic bullet to increase Unity/Isis sales? Can they bolster ProTools hardware sales? I just don't see a solution for them. I'm curious if someone can imagine them turning around with that business model and product line.



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Eric SantiagoRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 3:29:16 am

Wouldn't Autodesk be a better fit?
They don't seem to have an in with the Hardware side of things.
We have a few seats in Maya and use MC/Symphony and Pro Tools for finishing.
Of course I say Black Magic second :)


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Michael SandersRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 12:52:25 pm

Avid is much more than just MC, there's also Newscutter, DS etc etc.

What might happen is that Avid might concede that MC is a niche product and start to charge a niche price.

We've all swallowed the kool aid spread by Apple and the like that pro software can be cheap and thus editing can be cheap. That was supposedly going to cause all the big iron facilities to disappear - which hasn't happened and turn's out that might not be such a good thing after all.

Lets not forget that the cheapening of tools by companies like Apple has driven down the perception of talent needed to drive that software.

Personally if Avid did put up the cost of software to a level that made sense for them then bloody good to. Our industry has been cheapened by cheap tools and quality has suffered.

Michael Sanders
London Based DP/Editor


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Bill DavisRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 6:52:36 pm

[Michael Sanders] "Lets not forget that the cheapening of tools by companies like Apple has driven down the perception of talent needed to drive that software."

I quarrel with this assessment.

The cheapening of the tools is nothing but a reaction to the fact that information has been unleashed in an instant and global fashion.

You can now "look up" anything from anywhere, anytime. This is the massive central change in our world. Like it or not, this is what changes everything by fundamentally devaluing "expertise" across the board. Don't know how to shoot? Sit in bed and look it up. Don't know how to light? Take a few hours and read up on it on an airplane or at the beach, or at your desk. Don't know how to edit? That info is everywhere and everyone can access it in 10 seconds today.

Learning how to make moving picture content once took an internship and access to a place where expertise was concentrated. Today it simply doesn't. A smart kid can come right here to the Cow and read Tim W intelligently break down the compositional approaches of great DPs - and learn.

This reality takes the easy first 50% of the learning curve off the table. Anyone can do the basics with a brain a Cow connection and some dedicated study.

So with increasing volumes of "content" everywhere - what's the shelf life of "great" compared to good? How much more money can you arrange to make doing "great" verses doing just good work?

Because remember, every production effort is a pyramid of value with most of the serious money going to the top. And what we're facing is more and more pyramids being spawned everyday - all competing for the same eyeballs and wallets.

This isn't Apple at work. It's the globalization of information access. And all video is just more tiny clumps of information in the massive sea.

The ship that sailed some years ago. Too many of us remain on the shore watching it sail past. Knowing we need to either grab an opportunistic rope or hope we remain somewhat close to the cargo stops of the future.

FWIW.

"Before speaking out ask yourself whether your words are true, whether they are respectful and whether they are needed in our civil discussions."-Justice O'Connor


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Reuben M TuckRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Feb 11, 2013 at 7:09:11 am

I too belong to an industry "cheapened" by simpler, cheaper tools and software, and yes, quality has suffered: I'm a voice actor, and every fool with PC and a hole in his butt now thinks he's a voice actor. But as with voice-over, the video market and the industry itself have changed and expanded so radically there's a place for such talent (or lack thereof) and the real pros, those doing it for long form, for television, for documentaries and features, aren't losing out to them too much. I don't like people using SMS shorthand (LOL, OMG, IMHO) in emails or other communications, but it ain't going back to how it used to be, so my strategy is to learn the new tools, stay current, keep my work out there to the best of my ability and compete.


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TImothy AuldRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Feb 11, 2013 at 12:34:16 pm

I have to disagree with your assessment of "real pros." A professional for me is someone who gets paid for what they do. While I do broadcast, docs and such I know many insanely talented editors who do nothing but corporate and industrial work and make a damn good living doing it. I agree you do have to learn the current tools and compete. There is not another way that I know of. But just because tools are cheap doesn't get everybody work. Those without talent and dedication will work little, if at all - no matter how cheap the tools get.

Tim


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Bernhard GriningerRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 10:44:17 am

Hello,

since Autodesk already owns Softimage XSI which has been developed by Microsoft hand-in-hand
with DigitalStudio (now AvidDS) I think Autodesk would be a fit at least for the XSI/DS product line.
Avid's absolutely under-priced sale of XSI (sharing the interface and parts of algorithm of DS)
is something I never understood!

At the other hand I don't see any benefits for Autodesk at the moment,
now they are pushing SMac. Autodesk doesn't have a demand for Hardware,
and Avid's algorithms aren't the latest either. The only thing Autodesk
could benefit of is Audio, like Eric already said.



But I don't see any remarkable synergy effects if Blackmagic acquired Avid either!

What should BMD do with old MC-algorithms (those under the hood) and over-priced server-hardware,
that couldn'nd be converted well into easy to use and fair-priced consumer style products;
thats what BMD usually does.

It would make much, much more sense to me if BMD would acquire TheFoundry!
Imagine a DaVinci, with NLE timeline functionality of (the now EOL'd) Storm,
nodes and algorithm from NukeX, and format conversions from Teranex.
These are state-of-the-art ultra-highend technologies that could lead into the ultimate Finishing-App.
BMD's and TheFoundry's technologies would be a perfect fit!

Avid has a huge amount of assets. And economically it would make more sense
if these assets were sold separately for the highest bid.


Best regards,
Bernhard


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Eric SantiagoRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 11:01:42 am

I completely forgot about DS, goes to show you how deep their marketing is with that app :(
If anyone acquires Avid, itll be just maintenance the first few years then maybe some new innovations.
Last year I met up with our Avid regional sales (mid western Canada) and I asked him how they were doing with the Apple debacle. He flat honestly said they are not making squat. Sure they are getting some free marketing from the Twits and the Cows but no push in the black.
It didnt stop us from adding an extra MC seat and then recently Symphony (crossgrade) but does make us a little leery about they future.
we hope them the best since we all know that competition is good.


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Pat HorridgeRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 12:26:10 pm

Nothing really unexpected here. Makes sense to rationalize the product portfolio.
Staffing reductions would logically follow that.
Impossible to know what is going on behind closed doors but check out the info online about Avid Sphere. If that came out soon Avid would steal an important and valuable market place and revitalize ISIS and Interplay.

Pat Horridge
Technical Director, Trainer, Avid Certified Instructor
VET
Production Editing Digital Media Design DVD
T +44 (0)20 7505 4701 | F +44 (0)20 7505 4800 | E pat@vet.co.uk |
http://www.vet.co.uk | Lux Building 2-4 Hoxton Square London N1 6US


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Oliver PetersRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 1:18:05 pm

First of all, Avid isn't going anywhere. The video edit software, ProTools, ISIS/Unity (shared storage), Euphonix and news room products all seem to contribute equal percentages to the bottom line. So if your view is only as a Media Composer editor or Pro Tools mixer - or for that matter, an FCP editor looking on from the outside - you really haven't got the full picture of the company. They still have millions in the bank, so financials are more an issue of burn-rate and keeping the stock market happy.

Whether or not MC is an ideal editor for the individual user is probably of most concern to the folks who post on this forum. OTOH, if you are an enterprise user, like broadcast stations, large post facilities, et al, then FCP X and Premiere Pro aren't in the same league for satisfying those needs.

As far as the marketability of these products, take a look at Quantel. They have restructured over the years and run a fraction of the workforce that Avid does. They have focused solely on the pro market. Although they have a small footprint, they are still the dominant company in DI, Stereo3D post and also offer leading solutions for news editing and cloud editing.

If you are going to be a pro-oriented manufacturer, then you have to structure the outflow to match the intake.

- Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Craig SeemanRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 2:04:13 pm

[Oliver Peters] "The video edit software, ProTools, ISIS/Unity (shared storage), Euphonix and news room products all seem to contribute equal percentages to the bottom line"

And that bottom line has been in the red for many years now. While they're not losing as much as some years back, a Q1 2012 loss is more than half of what they lost for the entire year for 2011.

[Oliver Peters] "take a look at Quantel. They have restructured over the years and run a fraction of the workforce that Avid does. They have focused solely on the pro market. Although they have a small footprint, they are still the dominant company in DI, Stereo3D post and also offer leading solutions for news editing and cloud editing."

But it seems Avid isn't following that model. It may also be that Quantel doesn't have any viable low cost competition so they own their niche or at least a good portion of it.

Avid, I believe, will be facing lower cost competition in their hardware markets, I believe. If not, they can shed some more and target that. That they seem to be reluctant to do it is either a mistake or maybe they are also feel that their going to get hit in that market, which may be why they've toyed with other markets in recent years such as "prosumer."

Yes I could see them going the way of Quantel but if that's the solution, they aren't doing it (yet). Maybe the whole MC/Symphony crossgrade strategy is a big fail for them. All accounts are that it lost them money. Maybe they expect to make it back on high upgrade pricing, which people have always groused about.

While there certainly ways out for Avid, they've shown no signs of moving towards them beyond shedding employees. If they have a core business that's profitable, they're having a hard time hitting it. They've had one marginally profitable quarter in the last 22. The only thing keeping them afloat is cash on hand and lack of debt. Those, btw, are key things when it comes to being a desirable acquisition for somebody.



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Oliver PetersRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 3:12:47 pm

[Craig Seeman] "But it seems Avid isn't following that model. It may also be that Quantel doesn't have any viable low cost competition so they own their niche or at least a good portion of it."

I don't think that's true. On the DI front, cheaper options include Scratch, Filmmaster and Resolve, among others. On the news side - Avid, GVG and others. In fact, Quantel at NAB introduced some lower cost (for them) solutions to deal with their own market pressures. The key ingredient is that Quantel has successfully marketed a value-added product line and restructured costs to match.

[Craig Seeman] "The only thing keeping them afloat is cash on hand and lack of debt. Those, btw, are key things when it comes to being a desirable acquisition for somebody."

There are some scenarios as to how this could play out. One is to go back to private ownership. Possibly with venture capital backing. That's essentially what Quantel did to get out from under Carlton a few years ago (leveraged management buy-out plus VC infusion). VC ownership is the current situation for GVG.

Another thing to consider in looking at a sale is that it's not an all-or-nothing deal. You could, for instance, sell off just the NLE software to a company like BMD. Then re-package Avid as a services-solutions vendor dealing with enterprise customers for turnkey news/SAN/edit installation. That's the IBM model.

- Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Craig SeemanRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 3:58:55 pm

[Oliver Peters] "The key ingredient is that Quantel has successfully marketed a value-added product line and restructured costs to match."

And Avid hasn't and shows no signs of doing so.


[Oliver Peters] "One is to go back to private ownership. Possibly with venture capital backing."

That would work. The shedding of pay roll and the lack of debt makes them a good target for "somebody." The key piece is a viable business model. Without that they fail. So far they are without that as it stands.


[Oliver Peters] "You could, for instance, sell off just the NLE software to a company like BMD. Then re-package Avid as a services-solutions vendor dealing with enterprise customers for turnkey news/SAN/edit installation."

This too would make sense. Again I don't think Avid products will disappear. I think they are a good acquisition target and every step they are prioritizing seems to indicate that will happen at some point.

Avid, as they now exist, can't be around much longer (2 years maybe) whether it's under the same brand name, going private with venture capital, being bought by piecemeal or entirely by other established video company. It's going to change.

For me the biggest question is how the services-solutions aspect will be handled.



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Walter SoykaRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 4:08:05 pm

[Oliver Peters] "The key ingredient is that Quantel has successfully marketed a value-added product line and restructured costs to match."

[Craig Seeman] "And Avid hasn't and shows no signs of doing so."

Avid has restructured. Isn't that the difference between their GAAP losses and non-GAAP gains?

Avid is also marketing a value-added product line -- it's just that almost none of us here are their target audience. MC is really only a fraction of what Avid does. Why should they bend over backwards to chase Apple and Adobe for low-margin, lone-gunman desktop editorial when they can practically own both the hardware and software sides of collaborative editorial?

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
Creative Cow Forum Host: Live & Stage Events


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Chris HarlanRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 4:11:53 pm

[Walter Soyka] "Avid has restructured. Isn't that the difference between their GAAP losses and non-GAAP gains?

Avid is also marketing a value-added product line -- it's just that almost none of us here are their target audience. MC is really only a fraction of what Avid does. Why should they bend over backwards to chase Apple and Adobe for low-margin, lone-gunman desktop editorial when they can practically own both the hardware and software sides of collaborative editorial?
"


True all that. Advantage Soyka.


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Craig SeemanRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 4:21:50 pm

[Walter Soyka] "Avid is also marketing a value-added product line -- it's just that almost none of us here are their target audience. MC is really only a fraction of what Avid does. Why should they bend over backwards to chase Apple and Adobe for low-margin, lone-gunman desktop editorial when they can practically own both the hardware and software sides of collaborative editorial?"

I agree with this generally but Avid doesn't have a clear business model. The whole crossgrade lost them money. Why bother with it if it's not a viable model? These are the serious mistakes they keep making. MC/Symphony should really just be the NLE tool that goes with Unity/Isis system sales. They may want a wider base if they feel that the more people are comfortable with the NLE the more likely they'll buy Unity/Isis.

If people are buying MC/Symphony and going with other storage solutions, that's not serving Avid's financials. That people are finding other viable storage options with Avid's "front end" NLEs, that indicates a problem (IMHO) also.

The question is, as Adobe and Apple progress, to what extent that might hurt Avid in the future as such users are not going to be buying Unity/Isis . . . or they'd be using MC/Symphony.

One (partial) solution, may be to tied MC/Symphony more closely to Unity/Isis in some fashion. The problem is, they're doing what they're currently doing and they keep losing quarter after quarter. Imagine 22 quarters and they still haven't figured out which way is up. They keep shedding employees as their primary solution. This time they shed product lines as part of it. That may not be a bad thing but it doesn't address the fundamental business model that needs to change.



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Jack GuthreyRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 4:37:51 pm

[Craig Seeman] "The whole crossgrade lost them money. Why bother with it if it's not a viable model?"

The crossgrade was definitely a loss as a lot of lone-man software editors bought it to have another option. The question down the road will be how many facilities bought it and end up replacing their useless FCS and Xsan with ISIS/Interplay.

What I've already found is that many non-Avid facilities are starting to become reacquainted with Avid and all the workflow benefits that come with it.

[Craig Seeman] "MC/Symphony should really just be the NLE tool that goes with Unity/Isis system sales."

For a lot of facilities - it is. They buy into the infrastructure and just use whatever NLE works with it.

[Craig Seeman] "If people are buying MC/Symphony and going with other storage solutions, that's not serving Avid's financials. That people are finding other viable storage options with Avid's "front end" NLEs, that indicates a problem (IMHO) also."

That would be going back to a 'closed' system which used to be one of the major things people complained about. I don't think it'll be too long before there is an ISIS price drop (though it already isn't far off from competitors) and you start seeing more and more of it.


I believe Avid is "sitting pretty" with all the FCP shakeup. People want infrastructure and the only company pitching a true end-to-end solution is Avid. As more and more third parties begin to integrate with Avid Interplay (StorageDNA comes to mind) the entry point for the full workflow becomes more manageable and I think we'll see more and more shops rolling in an Avid environment.

Jack Guthrey
Carolinas Account Representative
Marshall Graphics Systems


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Craig SeemanRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 4:51:18 pm

[Jack Guthrey] "The question down the road will be how many facilities bought it and end up replacing their useless FCS and Xsan with ISIS/Interplay. "

Yes, that's certainly the question. So far, not enough. It may depend on whether Isis is a growing market vs those making due with less expensive competitors. The current economy and changes in the market are a big factor.

[Jack Guthrey] "That would be going back to a 'closed' system which used to be one of the major things people complained about. I don't think it'll be too long before there is an ISIS price drop (though it already isn't far off from competitors) and you start seeing more and more of it."

The people who complained were people looking for lower cost solutions. For NLE users, there were a number of them which is how FCP legacy got its foot hold. Now Adobe is pushing into that turf.

If Avid wants to prioritize value over price they need to focus on it. If they want to focus on price and volume they need to focus on that. The problem is they don't have a business model that makes sense.

[Jack Guthrey] "I believe Avid is "sitting pretty" with all the FCP shakeup"

Absolutely NOT! Avid is not an NLE company. The market for Isis Interplay etc. hasn't change because of FCP. At least not enough to impact their downward spiral.


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Jack GuthreyRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 4:59:15 pm

[Craig Seeman] "If Avid wants to prioritize value over price they need to focus on it. If they want to focus on price and volume they need to focus on that. The problem is they don't have a business model that makes sense"

I agree with this 100%. Avid really needs to show this industry what it's really about.

[Craig Seeman] "Absolutely NOT! Avid is not an NLE company. The market for Isis Interplay etc. hasn't change because of FCP. At least not enough to impact their downward spiral."

I should have clarified. There are a lot of facilities that are FCP reliant and actually have an infrastructure built around it. That infrastructure basically gets EOL'd with FCP7's death. Avid is the only one that can really pick up that business and expand upon it.

Jack Guthrey
Carolinas Account Representative
Marshall Graphics Systems


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Craig SeemanRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 6:08:50 pm

[Jack Guthrey] "That infrastructure basically gets EOL'd with FCP7's death."

I'm not so sure unless you mean Final Cut Server. Apple doesn't have anything that really competes with Unity/Isis. Somehow I don't think there are a large number of companies like Bunim Murray that are waiting. They'd be moving when their budget/purchase cycle hit. It's already been over a year.There may be moves but it'll be more like a trickle than a rush. The longer the wait the more time Avid competitors have to put together or improve competing offerings.

[Jack Guthrey] "Avid is the only one that can really pick up that business and expand upon it."

That doesn't seem to be the case. It really depends on the facility needs, perceived value, ROI. I don't see how that's changed in the market one way or another with FCP EOL (to any great extent).



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Chris HarlanRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 5:48:17 pm

[Craig Seeman] "If they want to focus on price and volume they need to focus on that. "

But, Craig, I don't think that's what they are focusing on. To my mind, the crossgrade was an investment on their part to re-establish primacy at the upper end of the market. Even if they don't make much off of the small users like myself, I become part of a pool of available talent for the larger users, and part of a culture that supports its existence at the high end. I don't think its an ongoing strategy as much as a one-time event that they felt they needed to act upon. And, I think it was the smart move.


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Craig SeemanRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 6:22:06 pm

[Chris Harlan] "But, Craig, I don't think that's what they are focusing on. To my mind, the crossgrade was an investment on their part to re-establish primacy at the upper end of the market."

"Primacy" is an abstract concept that lost them money. The only reasons I can see for the crossgrade was to hook people into their expensive upgrades or to hope that if a facility moved lots of seats it would make Isis more attractive for integration.

"Primacy" doesn't mean much if they all jump to Adobe (or FCPX?) in two years if those products catch up by that time in their professional feature set. If Adobe and Apple aren't competitive than the difference between $1000 crossgrade and a $2400 purchase isn't going to be an issue since the facility in need wouldn't really have a choice.

[Chris Harlan] "And, I think it was the smart move."

A few financial analysts think not. The only way it works is if it increases hardware sales and maybe upgrades but that hasn't happened. That had a small bump probably because companies like Bunim Murray did make the hardware purchases along with the crossgrade but this quarter past was very very bad.



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Chris HarlanRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 8:09:20 pm

[Craig Seeman] "[Chris Harlan] "But, Craig, I don't think that's what they are focusing on. To my mind, the crossgrade was an investment on their part to re-establish primacy at the upper end of the market."

"Primacy" is an abstract concept that lost them money. The only reasons I can see for the crossgrade was to hook people into their expensive upgrades or to hope that if a facility moved lots of seats it would make Isis more attractive for integration."


Well, that's what makes horse races. Owning a market is not an abstract concept, and, given their limited choices, trying to do so seems to be a valid one. I'm also not sure how you can say that Avid lost money by conducting the crossgrade simply because they lost money during the period of the crossgrade. I'm curious how you are able to blame this specifically on the crossgrade. Is there some factoid floating around out there that demonstrates that the revenue from sales of non-discounted MC units was seriously diminished by flutter from the crossgrade? If so, I'd like to see it. My sense is that the crossgrade was largely attractive to a good number of people who, without the opportunity of a crossgrade, probably would not have considered Avid at all.


[Craig Seeman] ""Primacy" doesn't mean much if they all jump to Adobe (or FCPX?) in two years if those products catch up by that time in their professional feature set. If Adobe and Apple aren't competitive than the difference between $1000 crossgrade and a $2400 purchase isn't going to be an issue since the facility in need wouldn't really have a choice."

I'm sorry. I don't follow your logic here at all. Does "primacy"--what with the way you keep putting in quotes and all--have some sort of special or odd meaning to you? I'm mean, in the first sentence, you are basically saying "Being a market leader doesn't mean much if your customers go to your competitors and they become the market leaders." Duh, huh? And, the second sentence I just don't understand what you are getting at, at all. Probably my thick head, but I just don't see how any of this wraps together to demonstrate why a crossgrade program that was largely designed to bring people who might never have been users into the fold is a bonehead idea.

[Craig Seeman] "[Chris Harlan] "And, I think it was the smart move."

A few financial analysts think not. "


Yeah, and there have been a few that thought it was an okay move, or at least an interesting move, but the reality is that most financial analysts don't think of Avid at all. Small Potatoes. To my mind, Avid is a prime example of the many companies that had no business going public over the last two decades, but whose upper management got caught up in the mania that showering in money can produce in all but the best of us.


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Craig SeemanRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 8:19:25 pm

[Chris Harlan] ". I'm curious how you are able to blame this specifically on the crossgrade. Is there some factoid floating around out there that demonstrates that the revenue from sales of non-discounted MC units was seriously diminished by flutter from the crossgrade? If so, I'd like to see it."

I've seen several reports. I thought I had posted them around the time analysts were commenting on the reports.

[Chris Harlan] "My sense is that the crossgrade was largely attractive to a good number of people who, without the opportunity of a crossgrade, probably would not have considered Avid at all. "

But there wasn't much of a financial payoff to it. Again Avid doesn't make much money on NLEs and at a heavy discount "doesn't make much" is even less. I wonder how many who bought MC 5.5 paid to upgrade to 6 or have upgraded to Symphony at their standard upgrade price? How many went the Bunim/Murray route and included big hardware purchases?

We can speculate but the hard fact is last year they lost about $20 million for 4 quarters and they lost $13 million in Q1 2012 so they decline Q over Q would probably be fairly steep. That's a downward, not upward trend and this is after the crossgrade.



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Oliver PetersRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 5:43:01 pm

[Jack Guthrey] "I believe Avid is "sitting pretty" with all the FCP shakeup. People want infrastructure and the only company pitching a true end-to-end solution is Avid. As more and more third parties begin to integrate with Avid Interplay (StorageDNA comes to mind) the entry point for the full workflow becomes more manageable and I think we'll see more and more shops rolling in an Avid environment."

Isn't that a pretty limited market, though? After you eliminate large broadcasters, large networks and a few large post houses, who's left? Few, if any, 4-12 suite facilities are going to invest in ISIS, much less Interplay. If anything, Facilis or Small Tree stand to gain more so than Avid - among this part of the market. Obviously that's the issue here. Clearly Avid has to decide whether it's a large-enterprise-vendor or an NLE/Storage-for-all-occasions company.

- Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Bill DavisRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 8:58:48 pm

[Walter Soyka] "Why should they bend over backwards to chase Apple and Adobe for low-margin, lone-gunman desktop editorial when they can practically own both the hardware and software sides of collaborative editorial?"

Uh...

Because the code bases of both X and PPro can grow and add capabilities to erode market share from the AVID ecosystem?

The real question might be what's the "value added" proposition for big, fixed institutional infrastructure?

Joining together under a single roof was the only way to concentrate brainpower and tools and facilities for most of the early industrial age, but today, I'm not sure that in our industry anymore, a company can afford any better a computer for me than I can for myself.

Which kinda begs the question "what don't you have access to at home that you have access to at work anymore?"

Seriously.

I get the camaraderie and similar intangibles - but honestly, if you got sick tomorrow - how much of what you do today couldn't you do from home? And worse, yet, what about your bosses? What do they contribute that requires them to be in a room down the hall from you?

We can do meetings, distribute work, chat, post, download data, and participate from anywhere. Via desktop, laptop and now, phone. And as connectivity expands, we can even have multi person meetings with semi-virtual individual presence.

What's the continuing point of the office rent] unless you're trying to manage your workforce by "check-in to chairs?"

I'm not saying it's right or better, or even good. I'm asking how much centrally located office teams are "necessary" in the electronic content creation business in today's world?

Worth thinking about, maybe.

"Before speaking out ask yourself whether your words are true, whether they are respectful and whether they are needed in our civil discussions."-Justice O'Connor


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Gustavo BermudasRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 6:12:08 pm

I don't think Quantel is a good example in this case, they are more of a niche product, and in my opinion, I've using a Pablo since v3, it's way overpriced for what it does, not to mention how buggy it still is.
And for color work, I jump to Resolve if I have the chance over Pablo.

I'm not sure either how more they will be able to sustain their business model. They have a client base made five years ago when big iron system made sense, but the cost of upgrading nowadays from Quantel is ridiculous and to be honest, the color tools are not that great.
On the other hand, editing is awesome, but way too expensive for an editor software.


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Oliver PetersRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 6:22:01 pm

[Gustavo Bermudas] "I don't think Quantel is a good example in this case, they are more of a niche product, and in my opinion, I've using a Pablo since v3"

Actually it's the perfect model, because Quantel has two distinctly different product lines - news and post/finishing - which use entirely different architectures based on a somewhat common interface design. On the news side, Quantel is an entirely server-based infrastructure with various levels of client software (NLE types) connected to it. Parts of the BBC and ESPN, for example, run their newsroom operations off of it.

If Avid loses the small-to-medium user market, don't you think they'll end up in the exact same niche?

- Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Gustavo BermudasRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 9:34:23 pm

I don't know, I mean, Quantel's only software version of Pablo goes for $50K. I doubt Avid can charge that for any f their software only products, and if you add hardware it's in the 250K +. Maybe in the broadcast world, but not for post.

The bottom line in my opinion is that the world of post changed, before it was all about the big irons, but now it's not about the arrows anymore, it's about the indians. And Quantel business model is about big irons, but technically, I'm trying to think what is it that you cannot do with tools most people are using now that you can with Quantel and I cannot think of any.


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Craig SeemanRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 1:26:56 pm

[Eric Santiago] "He flat honestly said they are not making squat."

Yes, that's been well documented in various financial analyst reports. They actually lost money since $999 for the crossgrade, is a "loss leader." That would mean the Symphony crossgrade would be more so. Avid is in one respect like Apple, in that their software is really used to sell hardware (and services). NLE sales is down to about 12% of their revenue and declining.

The problem is that MC/Symphony may not be doing enough to sell Unity/Isis systems, where they do make more money. The problem is, I think, overtime the demand of Unity/Isis may be declining compared to less expensive options. Of course some facilities really want/need that front end management/hardware/service but I think those facilities are a declining share of the video post market.

While Avid may be shedding loses as their consumer product where major losers but even their handling of the sale may be questionable reasoning. The division brought in over $90 million yes sold for under $20 million. Some feel it should have been sold for more. Of course Avid's motive was probably to shed the 20% of their employees tied to such products, which would result in some savings.

Philip Hodgetts wrote a bit about this.
http://www.philiphodgetts.com/2012/07/avid-opposite-motley-fool-analysts-ad...

[Eric Santiago] "It didnt stop us from adding an extra MC seat and then recently Symphony (crossgrade) but does make us a little leery about they future."

Given that Avid is virtually debt free they can hang on for a couple of more years but they still don't show any business model that will turn them around. They keep shedding losses. Their "leaner" company may starve to death. I'd give them 2-3 years. They are a prime candidate for being sold given they are debt free.



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Craig SeemanRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 1:36:16 pm

[Bernhard Grininger] "But I don't see any remarkable synergy effects if Blackmagic acquired Avid either!"

I do.

[Bernhard Grininger] "What should BMD do with old MC-algorithms (those under the hood) and over-priced server-hardware,
that couldn'nd be converted well into easy to use and fair-priced consumer style products;
thats what BMD usually does. "


BMD would have no reason to keep everything alive. I think the over priced server hardware is going to be eclipsed over time and Avid's business model for it (it is their big revenue stream) isn't sustainable for any other company.

If Avid's price is low enough, they might be a bargain purchase. MC/Symphony would give BMD an added customer channel. They'd mark down the price and, my guess, tie it to their hardware (think Resolve). They've shown they have a business model for turning a profit on relatively low cost software (and hardware - Teranex). ProTools would give them entry into audio post. They'd handle all this just as they did with Resolve. It would fill out their product line and get them into and end to end turnkey solution (now with camera for acquisition as well).



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Bernhard GriningerRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 2:58:39 pm

[Craig Seeman] "BMD would have no reason to keep everything alive."


The crucial question here is what would cause BMD more cost:

- To make other strategic aquisitions with perfect synergy effects (like TheFoundry would be),
and fill up the gaps in ecosystem with latest technologies,

OR

- To make an aquisition of Avid with a huge amount of not needed assets,
forced to lay off people (with all legal issues), to EOL tools causing negative PR,
to consolidate not-so-state-of-the-art technology with own technology and causing
more costs than BMD's business model could return.
Economically this doesn't make any sense to me.

For BMD, Avid could become an economical disaster!
Of course, only my personal opinion ;-)


Best regards,
Bernhard


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Craig SeemanRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 3:49:19 pm

[Bernhard Grininger] "To make an aquisition of Avid with a huge amount of not needed assets,"

It depends on the price and value. Avid may give BMD a much more lucrative customer base than The Foundary. Avid's base is willing to spend significant money and, on the facility level, may be looking for complete integrated workflow that BMD would be able to offer them.

[Bernhard Grininger] "forced to lay off people (with all legal issues),"

Avid's doing that. The lower the payroll the better the acquisition value. That no debt load and a very valuable customer base make them an excellent target.

[Bernhard Grininger] "to consolidate not-so-state-of-the-art technology with own technology "

Media Composer/Symphony have a valuable base. It's a product line that BMD may be willing to do further development on. Even if some of the UI is old there's certainly enough there to build on. BMD can be more aggressive that Avid is willing to.



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Jack GuthreyRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 4:19:25 pm

I am very confused on this reoccurring statement of "over-priced servers". I need clarification - is the idea that hardware server prices will drop significantly or that Avid's server prices in specific need to drop? I have found Avid's price to be quite inline with competitors.

One of Avid's problems is that they have not reeducated customers. They aren't the locked-down, closed-off system that people came to know many years ago and their prices are not out of touch with competitors either.

Their marketing in general has been pretty lack-luster. Most people in this industry aren't aware of the full Avid workflow and that's an issue. We all gear lust and Avid has some of the lust-iest stuff.

If a company were to buy Avid, they'd have to keep a lot of product afloat. Broadcasters and large facilities that have bought into the Avid ecosystem by the millions of dollars will not take easily to product EOL nor would they look kindly to a consumer oriented company obtaining a very pro oriented one.

What is most interesting to me however is that most people clamored when Apple dropped the pro to focus on consumers and aren't cheering that Avid is doing the exact opposite.

I'm not at all worried that any of Avid's NLEs will disappear - Media 100 still exists in some form. Someone will buy that piece which of course is the part that most people associate Avid with. As stated many times, Avid makes it's money off of ISIS/Interplay and services/solutions. The comparison to IBM may be an extremely apt one.

Jack Guthrey
Carolinas Account Representative
Marshall Graphics Systems


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Walter SoykaRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 4:30:21 pm

[Jack Guthrey] "I am very confused on this reoccurring statement of "over-priced servers"... As stated many times, Avid makes it's money off of ISIS/Interplay and services/solutions. The comparison to IBM may be an extremely apt one."

Yes.

ISIS and Interplay is way overkill for a little guys like most of us here, who will at most spend $20,000 on a shared storage solution. Because we don't need the enterprise features, services, and support, the solution seems overpriced.

However, for those facilities who do need those things, the kinds of solutions we often discuss here to here are not under-priced so much as under-featured.

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
Creative Cow Forum Host: Live & Stage Events


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Neil GoodmanRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 4:37:17 pm

I think Avid will be around as long as all those other A’s keep making software that cant match its feature set.


Even if Avid did go belly up and stopped producing MC and Symphony, Hollywood would still be using it long after its death. Its too deep in the industry, and really no other NLE can match it for features and broadcast.

I mean alot of shops here are many many versions behind and there still cooking. Most dont know there is a MC 6, or even a 5 for that matter.

Neil Goodman: Editor of New Media Production - NBC/Universal


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Craig SeemanRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 4:44:41 pm

[Neil Goodman] "I think Avid will be around as long as all those other A’s keep making software that cant match its feature set. "

I think this is fundamentally wrong analysis. Avid does not make money selling NLEs. It's about 12% of their revenue and declining. They lost money on the crossgrade from all reports I've read. This isn't their primary market and they have no reason to compete in it.

[Neil Goodman] "I mean alot of shops here are many many versions behind and there still cooking."

An excellent example why this isn't a viable business model. Avid isn't even benefiting by upgrade purchases.

Adobe had this problem so some extent and, unlike Avid, seems to be working on a more viable business model. Adobe isn't a hardware/services company like Avid though.



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Neil GoodmanRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 7:30:30 pm

thats not what i meant. Even they go down. MC and Symphony will live on for quite some time.

Neil Goodman: Editor of New Media Production - NBC/Universal


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Craig SeemanRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 7:56:15 pm

[Neil Goodman] "MC and Symphony will live on for quite some time."

Agreed, even if/when bought by somebody else. It's sort of ironic that the product which isn't really Avid's money maker is the one that will probably endure.



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Jack GuthreyRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 4:53:51 pm

[Walter Soyka] "guys like most of us here"

You've hit the nail on the head again, Walter. It seems most of these "SKY IS FALLING!!" posts are all speaking on MC vs Adobe vs Apple or BMD making Avid available to the everyman. That's not Avid's game and not their market.

I do think Avid needs to directly show the entire industry what its wheelhouse is. I see IBM commercials on TV. I'm never going to buy a thing from them - I know what they do though. People need to know what Avid does. Especially the cool stuff like Interplay Sphere. What could be nice as well is showing an integration of a single guy on software quickly and easily handing off to a larger facility for finishing, broadcast, archive, etc.

I also would love to see and ISIS 1000 - basic shared storage that can be expanded upon when the time comes. That's probably a pipe dream though. Avid only sells enterprise grade things and enterprise drive arrays are anything but cheap.

What's been funny to me is coming here and seeing all this speculation when here at the office (about 80% of our business is Avid) the biggest kerfuffle was that now we have to find a good replacement to the M-Audio AV40s.

Jack Guthrey
Carolinas Account Representative
Marshall Graphics Systems


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Craig SeemanRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 4:57:38 pm

[Jack Guthrey] "That's not Avid's game and not their market."

I agree. Their big mistake is that they ARE trying to compete in it. That's the corssgrade which sold many MCs and did nothing much for their financial situation.

[Jack Guthrey] "the biggest kerfuffle was that now we have to find a good replacement to the M-Audio AV40s."

Why? The ones you have stopped working or suddenly sound worse? The product line was sold, not discontinued. I have no reason to replace my M-Audio BX5a.



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Jack GuthreyRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 6:27:19 pm

[Craig Seeman] "Why? The ones you have stopped working or suddenly sound worse? The product line was sold, not discontinued. I have no reason to replace my M-Audio BX5a."

I just used that anecdote to show that the announcement did not excite any concerns of Avid leaving the marketplace here.

Jack Guthrey
Carolinas Account Representative
Marshall Graphics Systems


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Walter SoykaRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 6:07:07 pm

[Bernhard Grininger] "BMD's and TheFoundry's technologies would be a perfect fit!"

The Foundry was acquired by a private equity group last year, so it's a pretty safe bet that they'll be up for sale within the next few years.

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
Creative Cow Forum Host: Live & Stage Events


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Joe MurrayRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 4, 2012 at 2:24:08 pm

[Bernhard Grininger] "The only thing Autodesk
could benefit of is Audio, like Eric already said."


I think Autodesk could benefit greatly if they purchased Media Composer and ported the editing interface into Smoke on Mac. Even if it's just the skin of the interface with Smoke's frame based file structure underneath. Immediate familiarity with an editing interface for thousands of editors combined with the depth of effects in Smoke would be a great combination.

Not that Smoke's editing interface is bad, I actually like it a lot, but the muscle memory of many years on another platform doesn't translate immediately.

Joe Murray
Edit at Joe's
Charlotte, NC


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Bernhard GriningerRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 4, 2012 at 3:25:35 pm

[Joe Murray] "Even if it's just the skin of the interface with Smoke's frame based file structure underneath. "


Hello,

Autodesk doesn't need to aquire Avid to bring MC-like editing functionality into Smoke!
Autodesk has claimed to have done a lot of research in usability to overhaul the GUI.
It is rather a market decision if SMac will see such functionality. If their market research
says that more and more customers are editing inside Smac from scratch, rather than
finishing only, then I'm absolutely sure we will see such functions!

My point is:
I simply don't believe Avid has algorithms (at least in video products)
that would be of interest to Autodesk. What Autodesk perhaps could need is audio technology.
Maybe ... if Avid assets are divided and sold to the maximum bids ...
Who knows where ProTools assets will land ...

Best regards


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Joe MurrayRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 4, 2012 at 3:42:45 pm

"a lot of research in usability to overhaul the GUI" is not the same thing as a complete interface or feature copy so there's NO learning curve at all. I'm speaking from the standpoint of a user who is trying to get up to speed on the new Smoke editing interface. It's good and I'm sure I can learn it. But if I didn't have to spend a month or two getting fast on a new interface, it would be nice. I'm sure I'm not alone.

I'm not saying this is likely, only that it's a potential benefit if Autodesk did purchase Avid, that they could use what they want from the Avid interface (for instance the keyboard based trimming) without fear of a lawsuit.

Joe Murray
Edit at Joe's
Charlotte, NC


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Oliver PetersRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 4, 2012 at 4:12:42 pm

[Bernhard Grininger] "Autodesk doesn't need to aquire Avid to bring MC-like editing functionality into Smoke!
Autodesk has claimed to have done a lot of research in usability to overhaul the GUI."


First off, the missing ingredient is the "offline editing" capability. The actual mechanics of editing in the timeline within Smoke are fine. The intent of Smoke is as an "online" or finishing editorial tool.

So let's say you add in the other. Do you really think anyone in their right mind is going to pay $3500 + annual subscription for that in today's economy? Remember, the finishing guys are happy, so you only stand to gain more users who fit into the group that needs the creative, rough-cutting toolset, as in Media Composer. Avid isn't breaking sales records at $2500 (or $1500 crossgrade). If you want a high-end compositor that's also a full-blown editor, you can get Avid DS for $5K today. Also no great sales to speak of. It's a lovely idea, but the reality is that NO ONE will buy it for offline editing. At this point, we don't yet know how many will actually buy Smoke 2013 at $3500, since it's only available as a not-full-featured public beta/trail.

If your argument is to make it, but sell it for $300, then forget it. No one can make any money at it and so won't put the development effort in, unless it's just a passion. Apple can do it with X because of the halo effect. If FCP "legacy" were still a Macromedia (or equivalent) product, you'd never have the sales volume that you have as an Apple product.

- Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Dustin ParsonsRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 5:36:11 pm

For those who think Avid will turn it around, are you investing in them? Stock is around $8 a share right now so if Avid rallys back there's a potential to make a lot of money.

I think I'll keep my Apple shares.


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Gustavo BermudasRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 6:19:34 pm

I think everything's going to change once Lightworks gets ported to Mac and support 3rd party video cards like BM, Matrox and Aja (it's in their roadmap). That will be the turning point, because it will be free or almost free. And Lightworks has proven over time to be the choice for many professional editors for feature film. I think with that looming over the horizon, it's hard to assess if buying Avid will be a good investment for Blackmagic. ProTools on other hand it could be.


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Craig SeemanRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 6:30:03 pm

[Gustavo Bermudas] "it's hard to assess if buying Avid will be a good investment for Blackmagic. "

Blackmagic has no problem with free and cheap to move people up their chain. Resolve Lite. Cinema camera including full Resolve and Ultrascope. For BMD it gives them a fully integrated post solution.



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Tim WilsonRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 6:53:00 pm

[Craig Seeman] "[Gustavo Bermudas] "it's hard to assess if buying Avid will be a good investment for Blackmagic. "

Blackmagic has no problem with free and cheap to move people up their chain. Resolve Lite. Cinema camera including full Resolve and Ultrascope. For BMD it gives them a fully integrated post solution."


Remember there was initially great consernation about what DaVinci had to do with Blackmagic's core business. Well, guessing BMD's core business anymore is a mug's game. The fact is that Grant buys what interests him, based largely around his experience as a CUSTOMER of all this stuff. His first job was running a DaVinci, so he jumped at the chance to buy the company and fix it.

What then? Dropped the price through the floor, improved the interface on two rapidly-developed upgrades, took support to a level it had never been, breathed life not just into Resolve but to an expansion of grading in general. I mean, grading was already blooming, but bloomed even more. His timing was perfect, even if it looked like plain old insanity at the time.

So what might happen with Avid? Dropped price, new interface, better service, pour some energy into a market ready for new energy, even if it looks crazy.

I asked him about buying Avid point blank. He laughed and COMPLETELY CHANGED THE SUBJECT. Dude. Laughed and COMPLETELY CHANGED THE SUBJECT. But he talked a lot about how glad he was that Avid opened up, because when he was a customer, he HATED what Avid was doing to him, screwing him over price on a closed system.

That's what I love about Grant. Very blunt, not afraid to break balls, views everything from the perspective of a customer who, no matter how often he's been screwed, remains delighted with this business.

I know that there are people who have real problems with BMD, but I promise that this interview will be the most fun you'll have related to this business in the past year.

http://magazine.creativecow.net/article/blackmagic-designs-grant-petty-we-w...

Anyway, I doubt that it'll happen for reasons that others have mentioned, but "incompatiblity with BMD's core business" is NOT among them. He's trying to run the table, and something big is going to happen sooner or later.

Tim Wilson
Vice President, Editor-in-Chief
Creative COW Magazine
Twitter: timdoubleyou

The typos here are most likely because I'm, a) typing this on my phone; and b) an idiot.


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Gustavo BermudasRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 3, 2012 at 9:53:14 pm

Actually I would love for him to buy Smac and enabling Blackmagic card on it, it seems the only way it could happen


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Oliver PetersRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 4, 2012 at 3:27:33 pm

FWIW - FCP.co has some useful links to Lightworks tutorials.

http://fcp.co/hardware-and-software/pro/871-editshare-publish-10-video-tuto...

- Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Bob ZelinRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 4, 2012 at 7:37:56 pm

I have not read this entire thread. So I apologize for my usual stupidity.

If Blackmagic bought AVID (or bought Media Composer/Symphony) - which will probably never happen - Grant would either make it free, or $1000 (like Resolve) - but of course, it would not run on AJA or Matrox cards ! Any public company is doomed in our market, because a public company has to make MORE profit the following year, to satify the share holders (so their shares increase in value) - and we are in a small finite market, with finite users. This is why FCP X is so important to Apple - they need 15 - 30 million people editing, or it doesn't make sense. If AVID can figure out a way to buy out the share holders, and become a private company again, then they can be in business "forever" because they make a great product, and can continue to sell to the "small" market of broadcasters and private production companies.

And what if Media Compooser was free (in a scaled down version like Resolve) - as soon at April 2013 ? How would this change our industry ? (boy, you guys have no faith in Premiere CS6 !)

Bob Zelin



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Tim WilsonRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 4, 2012 at 8:11:53 pm

Worth noting: Grant has said that the SDK is there for any developer who wants to write drivers for Resolve. He always hated closed companies as a customer, and won't be that now.

That said, it's easy to see why assume folks might not be in a hurry to add value to another guy's company. It's less easy to understand why they still think they're competitors in any meaningful way. Maybe if THEY want to make cameras, switchers, grading software and control surfaces...but otherwise, why pass up the chance to sell hardware?

anyway, if BMD had the only I/O that works with Symphony after Grant buys Avid, it won't be Grant's doing.

I link to that interview above. Please check it out.

re: GVG, it says they're outsourcing to another American company. Will that company be the one to outsource to China or wherever, or well the manufacturing still be done here? it's not clear, and the cynical part of me (ie, 40% and trending upward) thinks I know why.....

Tim Wilson
Vice President, Editor-in-Chief
Creative COW Magazine
Twitter: timdoubleyou

The typos here are most likely because I'm, a) typing this on my phone; and b) an idiot.


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Gustavo BermudasRe: So if Avid goes under, then what?
by on Jul 4, 2012 at 8:25:00 pm

No one other than Grant can say what makes sense for him to buy, but I can tell this, Blackmagic is not a software company, it's a hardware one, and they will support software as long as it makes hardware sales. Most NLEs at this time support BM, so I wouldn't see the point in buying one, unless you want to cripple AJA or Matrox output options, but Avid is not that popular among indies just as FCP or Premiere is.
The move to buy DaVinci was genius, because now they're forcing pretty much everybody to switch from Aja to BM, but DaVinci was so under he probably had a great bargain out of it. Avid may be too expensive to turn around, and for what really? To sell more Intensity Pros? I think his next move should be monitors and / or projectors. Also, if we are all going to go tapeless, we need in the hardware / codec infrastructure, I think they're pointing in the right direction with SSD recorders, but it would be nice to see broadcasters support that as well, if they make the equivalent to a SR deck on a tapeless format they'll rule the world.


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