The decision by IT hardware firm Tech Access to launch a media arm has proven to be a wise one. As the division prepares to begin signing off its first major deals in the region, Digital Broadcast talks to the venture’s GM, Adrian Wood.
Has Tech Access Media Solutions (TAMS) developed as envisaged when you launched?
Adrian Wood: TAMS has been evolving for several years now. The concept of aggregating and licensing content is still the same. What is very different is that we are using our own development company to create and manage media platforms. There has also been much more integration into the core business. Integrating the IT hardware business to media customers was considered from the outset.
Is there one particular area of the hardware business that has done well?
AW: We have been getting a lot of feedback from our resellers in different markets whereby governments and media groups are asking about DRM and the digitisation of archives.
We have put out many proposals in that area during the last two quarters.
Have you tailored the IT approach for your media clients?
TAMS has taken the Tech Access approach that we have had for the past 10 years with our principals.
We have looked at what media products and services our vendors provide and have then added the bits that were missing. Therefore, we have tied up and are working with media companies.
We are also in talks with major related broadcast technical firms.
What other sectors is TAMS tackling?
AW: There are now about five or six areas TAMS is focusing on from the developing media applications to the integrated hardware solutions, value-add professional services, content aggregation and to distributing/developing our own content. It has become something bigger than we thought. It has taken the best part of 12 months to put everything in place. Now the intention is to go out and shout about it.
What deals do you have on the horizon?
AW: We have several deals about to be signed which I believe represents one of the largest online media deals in the Middle East. It will combine mobile and online applications with a physical retail presence. We are handling the project end- to-end in partnership with a globally recognised entertainment brand, which already has a strong presence in the Middle East.
We are also developing white label content portals and mobile applications.
We are now launching our mobile apps in MENA; this same application was launched with mobile operators in Europe. We are also working on a similar application in conjunction with the IPL.
Will these services include video?
AW: These applications can be quick wins; some of the video streaming services will be tackled further down the road.
What content have you secured so far?
AW: We have a strong portfolio of kids’ content and will sign our first broadcast deal for these shortly. These will be backed with DVD releases and live shows through our live events division Tech Access Media Access (TAMACS).
TAMS has the rights to some video content based around the World Cup. It’s is also pushing out IPL content next year, working with the NBA and talking to Major League Soccer in the US. The idea is to provide content for all genres, in all languages. There is a gap in the Arabic language content online; this is something TAMS is trying to address.