CEO, Take 1
Almost six months after Take 1’s acquisition by Unicorn company, Verbit, Take 1 CEO, Louise Tapia, provides an insight into how the team is collaborating with their fellow media and entertainment sector specialists at sister company, VITAC, to provide end-to-end accessibility services.
Verbit acquired Take 1 in July 2022 as part of their strategy to become a world leader in transcription and captioning solutions. But Verbit was not originally a media company. Although they had made significant inroads in the legal and educational sectors, up until a couple of years ago, Verbit was relatively unknown in the media and entertainment industry. That changed when they acquired VITAC in 2021 and Take 1 just over a year later. Despite having spent less than six months as sibling companies, we’re quickly discovering that we are greater than the sum of our parts.
Like Take 1, VITAC was originally established as a family business and was started by current general manager Doug Karlovits’ father in 1986. Now, VITAC is the largest provider of closed captioning and accessible communications in North America, responsible for captioning approximately 582,000 live program hours per year, and creating verbatim, precisely timed captions for 57,000 pre‐recorded programs annually. Their customers include every major broadcast network, most cable channels, streaming platforms, program producers, and production companies, among others. Similarly, Take 1 was founded in Dom Bourne’s bedroom in 1998 and has grown into a leading provider of transcription, access, and localization services to the media and entertainment industry. We specialize in start-to-finish transcription and captioning services for video content, from the time the first scene is filmed to the final release on air and Take 1’s more than 2,000 customers include national and international broadcasters, cable networks, and streaming platforms, production houses, and social media outlets.
From the outset, there was a really obvious fit between the two companies in terms of the services we provide and the markets we serve, and it made complete sense to join forces. Within a month of Take 1’s acquisition we co-exhibited with VITAC at IBC Show in Amsterdam to showcase our joint capabilities and to introduce our respective customers to our new group partners. The response has been fantastic as both company’s clients discover the considerable benefits that this partnership provides.
For Take 1, being part of the Verbit group provides access to their world-leading technologies and innovations, and our association with VITAC firmly establishes our geographic footprint in North America. It also allows us to enhance and expand our service offering – working with VITAC has allowed Take 1 to now offer our clients world-class live captioning which we previously didn’t provide. For VITAC, partnering with Take 1 provides access to markets in the UK and Europe and gives the captioning company broader participation in the entire production process, from filming to international delivery. It also provides them with access to our Liberty platform and the capability to leverage metadata to create workflow efficiencies.
Together, we boast more than 50 years of combined experience in the media and entertainment industry and provide a true one-stop shop for accessibility services including live and offline captioning, transcription, subtitling, audio description, translation and dubbing services. Combining our capabilities to provide an end-to-end service means that our clients will also benefit from workflow efficiencies, faster turnaround times and world-class platforms for uploading media and managing projects. Importantly, the companies also share the same values and ethos around quality, speed of delivery, security and client relationships.
But, while we’re integrating many of our processes and working together to create efficiencies, each company has retained our own brand and teams. So, our customers have all the benefit of a global group and expanded services while retaining our personal relationships and the comfort of familiarity. For Take 1, VITAC and our customers, it really is a case of 2+2=5.
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