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50 Smartest Companies of the Year 2017

Engineering Intelligent Content: Linius

thesiliconreview-chris-richardson-ceo-linius-2017It’s time for smarter streaming. It’s time for intelligent content.

Video virtualization is set to disrupt and transform a broad array of industries. From cable television and digital advertising to anti-piracy, search, and security, any industry that relies upon or leverages digital video has a powerful new resource at its disposal.

Linius Technologies Limited has revolutionized video and has created the next evolution of video streaming. Founded in 2016, Linius’ patented Video Virtualization EngineTM converts cumbersome, static legacy video into agile, interactive, virtual video, in order to deliver an enhanced, custom experience for both broadcasters and end-users in any way imaginable, and some as yet to be imagined. Linius allows you to access digital DNA on a molecular level, with a virtual file, to tag, index, splice, manage and manipulate video content,at any point, in transit between content source and the end user’s screen — transforming static video into what is called intelligent content.

In Discussion with Chris Richardson, CEO

What led to the inception of the company?

We were listed on the Australian stock exchange in May 2016. At the time we thought video virtualization was mostly going to be of use in the video creation and distribution value chain — reducing costs on the path from camera to screen. It turns out that there is tremendous value there, particularly for network operators; however, as we were building the product, we learned that there’s even more opportunity on the value creation side. To be honest, there are over 30 markets in our product management pipeline that we could be pursuing, so choosing which ones to target first wasn’t easy. Ultimately it came down to business 101 — which presents the biggest, near-term opportunities for us? That question ultimately led us to target four horizontals: personalized advertising, video search, anti-piracy, and security and defense.

Can you talk about your first product that was launched?

Our first product was the Video Virtualization Engine™. To get a little technical, it’s a collection of micro services with RESTful APIs. It’s an engine that can be integrated into anyone’s workflow, and virtualizes video for them, reducing costs, increasing revenue, and opening up opportunities for monetization and innovation.

What were the barriers you encountered? What can your peers learn from it?

The technology we offer is truly new. As such, a big part of our daily life is focused on education, educating both customers and the market. Explaining the previously nonexistent or undefined continues to be our biggest challenge today. My advice for others in a similar situation would be twofold: keep your eye on the most important aspects of your business; and keep iterating over those important items, to make them continually better. That seems simple, but it requires a high level of organizational discipline, and it’s easy to let some things slip. Don’t. 

Discuss about the work culture of Linius

One of the best things about Linius, besides our people, is our distributed office. Sure, we have our corporate headquarters in Melbourne, but really only a handful of people work from there. We’re an expanding global company with key decision-makers in New York, LA, Geneva, Prague, and Buffalo so far. The trend of distributed, work-from-home, remote teams started a few years ago, and we’ve been able to learn from the lessons from those who went before us. It allows us as a company to hire the best people, no matter where they may be; and it allows those people to live and work in their most productive environment.

Brief us about any new products or technology that you’re currently working now.

There isn’t anything I can really talk about that’s imminent; however, I will say that we’re actively working on our blockchain strategy, and expect to have that sorted by the end of the year. There’s a natural affinity for blockchain in the nature of our virtual video files, and we think there will be some tremendous opportunities if we can execute on this properly.

What is the roadmap ahead for Linius?

Well, I don’t think we’ve made any secret of our plans for world domination. We’re focused on rapid-expansion and delivering valuable technology to totally transform several industries. I’d like to think that two years from now, we have large and growing revenue from each of our existing divisions; that we have strong partner relationships, closing deals around the world; and that our customers and shareholders are overjoyed by the value we’ve created for them. And it all comes down to execution!

Chris Richardson Reveals Why He Came To Linius

I’ve spent over 20 years building organizations and products that succeed in their markets and provide exceptional shareholder value, including 10 years in Silicon Valley. I came to Linius because this is hands-down the most disruptive and innovating technology I’ve ever seen. The ability to access video at the data level — to expose video at the atomic level to the power of artificial intelligence, automation, and business systems is transformative across the spectrum of video use cases. For nearly a decade I’ve been working in video technology, and the industry has done a great job of distributing video. Video works great — we have Netflix, YouTube, Facebook, and dozens of other giant sites. But if you really think about it, you can’t do much with video. The best AI application we see is Netflix recommendation engine, and we think that’s kind of sad. Linius changes that forever. Now that you can access video at the data level, the opportunities to drive innovation are almost limitless.

“From personalized TV advertising to enhanced search, security, and piracy protection, our solution provides intelligent content that can help you disrupt your industry.”