The first phase of Avid’s implementation of its entire MediaCentral platform on Microsoft Azure will take place at IBC next month, the company said yesterday in a conference call reporting its Q2 2017 results.
Avid CEO Louis Hernandez Jr. said the comprehensive cloud implementation of MediaCentral will be released in three stages, beginning at IBC 2017 and continuing at NAB 2018, with the final “storage piece” falling into place at IBC 2018. “A big piece will be this IBC, which will mean it’s available and announced,” Hernandez said. “There will be a big piece at NAB, and the final piece is planned to be announced at IBC. At that point, we should have the entire suite [available for cloud deployment].”
Part of a multi-year partnership with Microsoft, the cloud roll-out of Avid’s entire software stack will mark the culmination of a new product strategy that the company has spent years implementing. Hernandez said the move to the cloud is important because larger media companies who are moving to Avid’s new model of recurring payments for MediaCentral licenses want to ensure the terms of their licenses include the ability to move infrastructure to move to cloud storage at will. Avid had said previously that Al Jazeera Media Network had already begun working on a hybrid cloud implementation of MediaCentral.
The company reported a loss of $10.8 million, or $0.26/share, on revenue of $102.4 million in the quarter ending June 30, 2017. In the same period one year ago, the company reported income of $12.9 million, or $0.33/share, on revenue of $134.1 million. Operating expenses were down in the quarter, but not enough to make up for the loss in revenue. The company said it had $47.4 million in cash on hand at the end of the quarter, up from $45.0 million at the end of 2016.
The company did note that it met or exceeded guidance for all of its metrics, and that it had its second consecutive quarter of positive free cash flow. Large enterprise deals grew in the quarter, and individual cloud-enabled subscriptions had increased 91% over the last year, it said. And the Avid Everywhere platform now has more than 48,000 users, representing 27% growth from last year, the company said.
Responding to a question about Avid’s gross margins, Hernandez said the company may have some discretionary spending in the second half of the year that could be used to improve results. “Those development efforts [to deploy MediaCentral in the cloud] are largely funded by Microsoft, so we have an opportunity to decide whether or not we want to gain more efficiencies or develop new growth areas,” he said. “That’s one of the things we’re going to be considering for the second half of the year.”