VENN TV network taps Blackbird for cloud video editing

VENN, the upcoming gaming and esports television network created by Ariel Horn and Ben Kusin, has partnered with Blackbird to use its cloud video editing platform.

The three-year agreement was brokered by Blackbird’s new United States systems integrator partner, ASG, and will enable VENN to work remotely as it scales up content production.

VENN Blackbird
Image credit: VENN

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Scott Gillies, CTO of VENN, commented in a release: “VENN is launching a network dedicated to pop culture viewed through the lens of gaming and esports. Launching in this era of COVID and social distancing is presenting unique production challenges. With Blackbird, we have a new level of flexibility and it allows us to reimagine how productions should work. We can operate remotely and rapidly create and deliver highly engaging video content for gaming fans to enjoy whenever and wherever they wish. Blackbird is simply awesome and we’re super excited about utilising this game-changing cloud video editing technology.”

VENN is set to go live on August 5th with studios in Los Angeles and New York. The startup raised $17 million in seed funding last September, with the round co-led by BITKRAFT Esports Ventures. Other contributors to the round included Mike Morhaime, Amy Morhaime, Kevin Lin, aXiomatic Gaming, BDMI, YuChiang Cheng, Lifeline Financial Group, and Reimagined Ventures.

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Blackbird’s video editing suite is used by a wide array of customers, according to a release, including Riot Games, IMG, Peloton, Liverpool FC, and the U.S. Department of State.

Ian McDonough, CEO of Blackbird, added: “We are excited to add VENN to our growing list of U.S. and esports customers and also delighted that our new partner ASG have brought in their first deal with Blackbird. The VENN project is incredibly exciting and is a classic greenfield site where there is no legacy hardware-based incumbent and the team is free to select our state-of-the-art cloud-based solution. This fresh thinking makes production teams as efficient and sustainable as possible whilst being free to work from anywhere.” 

Esports Insider says: As tweeted photos of the work-in-progress studio show, VENN is rapidly ramping up ahead of launch. Cloud video editing tools should help the network avoid delay even as the pandemic continues to affect the industry.