New city software firm's big deal with French television [Herald, The (Plymouth, England)]
(Herald, The (Plymouth, England) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) A YOUNG start-up software company is set to develop the equivalent of the BBC's iPlayer for national broadcaster France Television. Plymouth-based Vualto has already developed an online video portal for France Television and is now set to begin its latest project for the broadcaster, which will take around six months to complete in three phases.
Vualto was formed less than a year ago by Camilla Young and James Burt, who formerly ran the technical teams at Twofour Digital.
They set up in business when the media company downsized its technology arm last year.
After establishing in an incubator unit at the Tamar Science Park in March, the new business quickly began generating work through existing industry contacts and recommendations. Ms Young said: "We grew organically and have had great success since we started.
"We didn't really think about it when we started up in business - it was a really quick decision and we just kept on going.
"Neither of us have run a business before, so we are still learning."
The company has just completed a commission for video mobile apps for the main Spanish broadcaster, Antena3, and also webcast a number of live events. It recently broadcast the UK's first live online advert for Activision, the games manufacturer behind Call of Duty, and a bizarre Big Brother-style competition filmed in Scandanavian video stores, which saw teams compete to stay awake the longest during a dayslong movie-watching marathon. Last month, Vualto was named by industry journal Streaming Media magazine as one of the top 101 companies in Europe's online video industry which Ms Young describes as major accolade for a "new face" in an industry she describes as "a bit of an old boys' club". She added: "We are delighted that people are taking notice."
Vualto, which relocated to a bigger office on the Tamar Science Park in September, is currently recruiting for a sixth staff member to take on a senior developer role.
"Our strategy is to get permanent people on board," said Ms Young, "but they are just so hard to find."
Although already well established within the international media circuit, the company also recently joined Plymouth Chamber of Commerce to network more locally.
It plans to establish regional business links to reflect its West Country roots and develop a "low budget offer" to provide technology platforms for smaller businesses.
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