IT Challenges in the Wake of a Media Merger

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HPA Tech Retreat Round Table Discussion

Mergers and acquisitions are at or near an all-time high in the Media industry. The need for traditional film and television businesses to reach consumers directly – spurred by competition from deep pocketed, natively digital VOD players – is pushing legacy companies to greater size and scale. For an industry where data in the form of content essence and metadata is the business, merging formerly separate organizations can lead to technology, system and process challenges in IT and media operations.

This was the subject of discussion at a round table led by myself and Signiant CTO Ian Hamilton at the 2019 HPA Tech Retreat. The goal of the discussion was to explore these challenges, their impacts on media companies prior to and after a merger, and best practices to deal with these challenges. In a lively exchange, participants agreed that some of the most vexing issues arise from:

– Being highly constrained in planning for the post-merger organization prior to close of the transaction

– Developing a complete understanding of the formal and shadow IT infrastructure, systems and processes that exist in merging organizations

– Integrating, consolidating and streamlining IT infrastructure, systems and processes while continuing to operate the business

– Managing change from the perspective of the people in the merging organizations

SaaS solutions help mitigate the challenges of Media mergers

Above all, discussion participants agreed that managing Media industry mergers is hard work, plain and simple. SaaS platforms and services, like Signiant’s Media Shuttle, can help to mitigate some of the uncertainties and simplify the challenges posed by these mergers.

Cost Savings: SaaS services can help merger integration planners realize cost savings that are part of the merger rationale by foregoing upfront technology infrastructure cost and on-going infrastructure management overhead.

Deployment: Characterized by agility and flexibility, SaaS platforms and services would likely be up and running for the combined organization more quickly than consolidated on-premise infrastructure and processes could be.

Consistency: SaaS platforms and services provide ready-made consistency in performance, features and customizations across multiple national and international facilities that may result from a merger.

Scalability: SaaS services are scalable. The elastic nature of the cloud maximizes availability while optimizing cost by spinning up and down infrastructure and application instances to accommodate varying workloads for the merged organization.

Storage Independence: SaaS solutions like Media Shuttle that work with any storage type, whether cloud or on-premises, allow merged organizations to maintain existing storage systems without having to worry about software, storage or vendor incompatibility.

If you are interested in how Signiant’s SaaS platform might help solve your business and operations challenges or if you would like to learn more about Media Shuttle, please schedule a demo.

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