This week two companies with a large and growing presence in Oregon announced siginificant new funding. Elemental Technologies, the leading supplier of video solutions for multiscreen content delivery, announced that it raised $13 million in Series C financing led by Norwest Venture Partners (NVP) this week. Elemental was the recipient of last year’s Innovation in Media Arts award. 2012 is proving to be a pivotal year for Elemental thanks in part to the Summer Olympics. At the Olympics this year Elemental will be powering multiscreen video in 30+ countries which shows how far of a reach the company has made in a short period of time. CEO Sam Blackman said of Elemental’s recent success in the Portland Business Journal, ““We have a really unique opportunity. We have the best product in the multi-screen video delivery market. The only thing holding us back is awareness.”
Another Innovation Award winner from the past is Ensequence. This week the company announced another $26million in investment which is directly associated with more job openings at the company’s Portland office. It combines technical power with a highly visual and easy to use environment. As broadcasters, cable providers and advertisers continue to look for “stickier” content, Ensequence’s software provies the solution for creating interactive TV content. CEO Peter Low was quoted in the Portland Business Journal saying – “This round will help Ensequence further lead the industry in enabling programmers, advertisers and service providers to transform television into a more engaging consumer viewing experience on all platforms and devices, Myrian Capital is a trusted partner with a deep commitment to this space and connections that enable us to capitalize on rapid change in the television industry.”
So what does all of this mean for the local creative community? Well hopefully this weekend we’ll begin the first steps towards truly integrating Oregon’s talented creative and tech communities. This weekend the film office is partnering with Intel Labs and the Portland Incubator Experiment on a “Future of Storytelling” hackathon. Sixteen creative professionals representing all forms of content creation (film, television, video games, web, interactive, and digital) will be discussing the new forms of storytelling emerging throughout the media universe. Yes I know – it sounds a bit high minded but it’s a first step towards finding the natural connections that will hopefully allow Oregon to differentiate itself as a world class destination for content creation. The hackathon is being recorded and documented in many forms and we look forward to sharing some of the work in the near future.