Exclusive interview with Profuz Digital’s Developer of LAPIS

Following the successful launch of brand new content management software system LAPIS for the first time at IBC2016, a look behind the scenes reveals an innovative development team. Responsible for its creation to empower a new generation for business and creative professionals, its capabilities are applicable across all industries and organisations of every size and shape. Profuz Digital optimises development resources with an agile approach that is worth taking note of.

kamen-ferdinandov-pbt-euCTO and Co-Founder of Toronto-based Profuz Digital, Kamen Ferdinandov along with his team, developed the system called by the acronym – LAPIS. It brings something different to the table to what is out there currently. This interview serves to explore how it delivers a refreshing approach to revitalise markets across a broad range of industries irrespective of company size. The motivation behind the need for a unique system in an already oversaturated marketplace is unveiled.

Q: Define LAPIS and what it does?

A: LAPIS literally was designed to empower organisations and boost business efficiency. It is a business process and information management system and streamlines distinct data related tasks, such as communications, project management and media management, into a single highly customisable “dashboard”. From this single system, the user can efficiently search and manage resources that were previously spread across independent communications, workflow, storage and sharing platforms.   All modern companies work with a multitude of systems to process their day-to-day data. They have email clients and video conferencing programs for communications, spreadsheets and calendars for project management, media sharing and cloud solutions for distribution and collaboration, as well as databases for customer relationship management and storage systems for visual and audio media. LAPIS controls all these systems under one roof, ensuring massively increased operational efficiency, much simpler corporate learning curves and removal of manual processes that are prone to human error.

For broadcasters, production and post production companies, LAPIS seamlessly integrates media asset management functions with editing platforms and video sharing websites. It simplifies distributing and sharing large files and allows the creation of flexible and secure collaborative workflows.

Q: Can a tv station using FCP suites, Avid media composer suites, Premiere and After Effects suites be placed under one roof concerning at least workflow management?

A: The short answer is yes, all kind of third parties’ solutions including specific workstations (like video editing, design, compositing, CGs, etc.) and specifically even mixture from various vendors can be placed under management of LAPIS at least covering not only workflow management but media (including metadata) management too and this could be both on individual workstations level (seen as one kind of resources) and individual operators/users working on them. The long answer could be very long, but in short: Depth of integration is very wide topic. The functionalities covered by an integration depends on available connectivity and extensibility features in both products (like APIs, protocols, SDKs for extending a product by third parties, etc.) and LAPIS as one of the sides can cover very wide range (if not all) of possibilities. From other side let say that some of the mentioned products could go in very deep integration by putting all necessary UI and connectivity inside the product’s UI thus making it very convenient for the users of that specific workplace.
Q: What made you develop LAPIS in the first place?

A: It became apparent that there was a gap in the market for a useful and effective data management tool that could be easily tailored to the end-user’s needs. This included making it highly adaptable so that it fits the user’s business, and not not the other way around. It was also important that it could be interacted with in whichever way the user wanted to, such as via web and mobile access. We saw this opportunity and went for it.


Q: What is different about the Profuz Digital LAPIS approach?

A: We offer something completely different to what is out there right now. We are not restricted to one market area; the product applies to every single company and industry. There literally are no limitations.

To provide an example, typically there are two approaches to providing solutions to customers, and they are either project or custom-based or industry-specific or ‘out of the box’. The custom/project based line is an extremely expensive option and can be slow moving. Also, historically from our experience, providers of such solutions are trying to replicate or reuse software that is made for specific situations which could prove to be a nightmare for users in the long run. Their knowledge and know-how is specific as they are focused on a limited number of customers/projects.

Next, regarding the industry-specific ‘out-of-the-box’ option, this can lack flexibility and needs additional integration work which means that the company needs to adapt to the software and not the other way around.

Looking at both approaches, we effectively address both of and our aim is to further develop and refine them. Of course, every solution has its drawbacks, even ours. However, by building certain partnerships, we are fully equipped to deal with those. For example, if an organisation has a requirement for the ‘best of breed CRM’, we would be confident and flexible enough to be to connect to whichever tool the client needs and provide other functionalities much faster and at an affordable rate, at the same time.
Q: What are the benefits that LAPIS brings?

A: Unlike other tech products that tie up users with single vendor dependencies, we prefer to give our clients the freedom to benefit from a variety of dynamic industry-specific technologies, while retaining the distinct advantages that using a single system brings, such as providing a single place to generate searches and reports even across multiple external systems.


Q: What is your relationship with PBT EU?

A: We chose to partner with PBT EU and distribute LAPIS through their well-connected channels. It also fills a vital void in broadcasting from their customers’ point of view in terms of efficiency, affordability and adaptability to the business needs of a wide spectrum of organisations. What makes LAPIS so powerful is its transferability and endless possibilities for customisation which significantly reduces costs and overheads. It also complements PBT EU’s latest EXEcutor™ server line by providing an additional new generation management layer. As global distributor, PBT EU introduced at IBC for the very first time, the revolutionary concepts behind LAPIS to the market which was very exciting for us to showcase our technology at a n industry platform of that size. There seemed to be an interest in the system but we still have a lot of work to do in terms of getting people to know it exists and try it out.


Q: Tell us a bit about Profuz Digital, the company and its values?

A: Profuz Digital is a software development company with our HQ based in in Toronto and an R&D centre in Sofia, Bulgaria. We develop software solutions for both small and large enterprises in a variety of industries that include media and broadcasting, outsourcing, education, health and many more.

Our team is completely obsessed and passionate about empowering businesses. We stay well-informed with trends and emerging tech, but also remain true to our vision. We pride ourselves on understanding the global mindset and remain open to various viewpoints across the spectrum, and our mission is to continuously look for a simpler and easier way for you to get things done.

Q: Can you expand on cloud services?

A: LAPIS can provide a complete cloud solution or it can be configured to work in a “hybrid” way. It would be entirely up to our customer and what their needs dictate in terms of the architecture. This adds an additional layer of security and creates a single environment to control the management, usage, structure, storage of various data and processes.

So it is entirely up to you – if you want, you can have access to all your business-critical files from any web device whether you’re at your desk, working from home or at a coffee shop halfway around the world. Businesses are more mobile today than ever before.

Some huge benefits of cloud asset management with LAPIS include easy implementation, quick adoption, great integration, an intuitive user experience and of course, security. Fast implementation frees up IT resources and allows you to get up and running right away. We also want our customers to enjoy a user-friendly interface that anyone in their organisation can understand, and LAPIS is easy to use.

Q: What else is in the pipeline and how do we find out more about LAPIS?

We have some exciting projects in the pipeline currently that involve broadcasting, VOD, subtitling with DRM and end user consumer accounting.






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