Avid touted growth in enterprise users of its MediaCentral platform as well as individual subscribers as it reported its fourth-quarter and fiscal 2016 financial results today.
Avid said its MediaCentral platform ended 2016 with more than 42,700 enterprise users, an increase of 29% compared to the end of the previous year. Meanwhile, the company boasted more than 60,700 paying individual subscribers, a smashing 240% increase compared to the end of the previous year.
Avid Chairman and CEO Louis Hernandez Jr. cited the free Pro Tools First offering as an effective way to draw in new subscribers. “The conversion rate of free users to paid subscriptions is much higher than industry averages, and that has been the primary driver of subscription growth,” he said.
The long-delayed launch of a similar free Media Composer First offering is now scheduled “later in 2017,” according to an update to Avid’s FAQ on the subject posted earlier this year.
Financial Transformation Is Almost Over
In remarks on a conference call with analysts, Hernandez said Avid is nearing the end of a years-long financial transformation into a more predictable model, and mentioned a rebound in the company’s storage business that he said contributed to growth in bookings in the fourth quarter. Avid reported a net income of $5.2 million in the quarter, compared to a net loss of $4.4 million in the year-ago period.
“We are very excited about the emerging opportunites that the Nexis open architecture provides,” Hernandez said, referring to the company’s recently refreshed shared storage platform. He pointed to the integration of Adobe Premiere Pro and Apple Final Cut Pro with Nexis products as examples of new customer opportunites that are opening up.
He also teased the upcoming “launch of Nexis in the cloud,” without providing further details except to say more would be shared during the Avid Connect 2017 event on the eve of NAB in Las Vegas.
As another example of growth opportunities, Hernandez cited a new multiyear enterprise services agreement with Al Jazeera that involves an effort to move the company’s global newsroom workflow entirely to the cloud.
And he noted the recent commitment by reseller Beijing Jetsen Technology to commit to make an $18 million equity investment in Avid in a deal that includes a guaranteed $76 million in minimum bookings and cash payments over three years. He described it as “a significant investment from a regional partner” and said it showed how Avid can continue to grow.
Avid’s earnings announcement was supposed to take place last week, but it was postponed at the last minute when executives learned that the company’s new auditors “were still finishing routing procedures,” Hernandez said. “These final procedures have now been completed, there were no changes to our results, and we filed our formal 10-K yesterday.” The company’s stock took a 15% hit last week but recovered partly this week.