Avid CFO: Company’s in a ‘Very Good Position’ with its Cloud Products

Avid Technology continues to see opportunities from the growing shift of media and entertainment (M&E) companies to the cloud, according to company CFO Ken Gayron.

“As the industry moves to more cloud-based offerings, which provides efficiencies to our user base, our roadmap and technology will allow us to continue to gain share,” he said Sept. 4 during his presentation at the Gateway Conference in San Francisco.

Avid sees its cloud-based MediaCentral workflow platform and new NEXIS Cloudspaces Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) cloud storage solution introduced at NAB 2019 as “being really exciting products as our enterprise customers look to the cloud,” he told attendees during the Q&A. “We feel like we’re in a very good position there with some really good work we’re doing with some major, major enterprise accounts,” he said, adding: “We think we’re at the every early innings and when those few big ones go, we think there’s going to be a big transition to the cloud, given the operating efficiencies” that it offers.

M&E industry consolidation, meanwhile, “hasn’t really impacted us,” he said, pointing out: “If anything, we’ve had some contracts with some large customers like Sinclair” Broadcast Group. As that company buys new stations, that “should be a benefit us,” he noted, adding that, in general, consolidation has “been an opportunity for us.”

Another continued opportunity for Avid is the growing popularity of over-the-top (OTT) streaming video content. As companies in that sector look to “get higher- quality content, that’s a tailwind for us because our tools are used to produce the highest-quality content available,” Gayron told attendees. “And as Netflix increases the standards for their content, that only protects our position because we’re one of the few tool [providers] that can do that,” he said, adding: “There’s such a reliance on Avid to produce that high-quality content that we have an embedded position” in the market now that’s “similar to what Bloomberg has in the financial community.”

Discussing new product innovation during his presentation, he noted Avid had “gotten substantial positive feedback from the market” for its new audio products introduced last month, Avid S1 and S4. The S1 portable mixing surface “opens cross-selling opportunities to many Pro Tools users,” according to a slide he showed during the presentation. S4, meanwhile, “expands Avid’s market opportunity by bringing the power of the Avid S6 to small to mid-sized music and post facilities at an affordable price point,” the company says.

The latest version of Avid’s flagship product, Media Composer film and editing software – Media Composer 2019, introduced early this year – provides a new user interface that has been “well-received,” Gayron also noted at the conference. Meanwhile, the latest version of its MediaCentral media platform – MediaCentral 2019 – features new functionality.

Avid’s new product introductions collectively provide it with a “strong belief on our continued growth trajectory and, more importantly, improving margin trajectory over time,” he said.

The company now has 1 million users and “thousands” of enterprise customers, he said, noting the company is now focused on higher-quality revenue streams from subscriptions and long-term agreements, which are growing recurring revenue. Avid is nearing 150,000 subscriptions (more than 147,000 for now) and that number has been growing by about 10,000 each quarter, he said, adding that, to date, it’s sold over 1.3 million licenses.