Victoria tech firm runs with good company

Victoria-based Mediacore has been chewing up the awards circuit both in B.C. and beyond over the last 18 months. Now the company’s international profile has been raised a little higher by online magazine Fast Company.

As a companion to its annual list of the world’s 50 most innovative companies, Fast Company has listed Mediacore in its top-10 list of the world’s most innovative companies in the digital video industry.

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Mediacore, which has created an online video platform that allows organizations to create a secure, customized video site with a focus on providing content in the education sector, was named as the ninth most innovative firm in the digital video industry.

And it’s in pretty good company considering top spot went to Hulu, which offers on-demand streaming video of TV shows, movies and webisodes from major networks and studios. The rest of the top-10 includes Vimeo and YouTube — numbers four and seven respectively.

“It’s great to be nominated and we’re thrilled with the result. It’s not every day that a company in Victoria is listed along titans like YouTube, Vimeo and Hulu and it speaks volumes to the quality of the product we’re building as a company and the team behind it,” said Mediacore CEO Stuart Bowness in an email interview. “This year has been a huge year for us and we’ve pushed video content to millions of students all over the world in new ways that have hugely impacted the universities and schools that depend on our platform.”

Fast Company singled out Mediacore for its work “enticing universities and [kindergarten to Grade 12] schools to build their own YouTube channels” and for the fact in 2012 the company had expanded to reach 5.5 million students per month when it added video sharing site SchoolTube as a customer.

Mediacore narrowed its focus to the education market last summer and now boasts customers including Columbia University, Indiana University and the University of London.

According to Bowness, the company, which has grown to 22 people from four in the last eight months, will be working on how to deliver educational content in both online and offline environments — a large problem in developing countries and where Internet connectivity is limited.

“We’ve got some great projects lining up with some huge international organizations who are interested in having us help them in solving these problems and we’re really proud to be part of a story that’s helping improve learning outcomes in areas with significant challenges,” said Bowness.

The company expects to increase staff to 35 or 40 in the next year.

Awards have been the norm for Mediacore recently as the firm picked up the Innovative Excellence (software) award at last year’s Victoria Advanced Technology Council’s annual awards, and it pocketed the $100,000 top prize at the B.C. Innovation Council’s New Ventures competition as well as a $10,000 Plug and Play Tech Centre prize.

Mediacore was also named a finalist in the Southwest Edu Conference Competition.

Winners will be announced during the annual music, technology and educational festival in Austin, Texas, March 4-7.

aduffy@timescolonist.com

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