To set up this highly ambitious project, we found, side by side: Tecteo/VOO (triple play distribution), BizzDev (mobile telephony), Neuro TV (real-time 3D motors), Victor 3D (post-production, special effects), Media Res (Broadcast production cf Arte Belgique), Acapela (voice synthesis), Triptyk (serious games, internet), No-Télé (HD OB vans), ACIC (real-time image analysis) and Dame Blanche (sound postproduction). I-Movix, another jewel in the crown of Walloon technology, specializing in high-speed imaging and real-time image stream processing, is also about to join this dream team.
The company’s initial capital, which is mainly private but also includes Hoccinvest, IMBC and, of course, Wallimage Entreprise, is €1,090,000 in cash. In addition, each technology unit brings its own cash contribution in terms of technology, licenses and know-how.
Building on these solid foundations, Virtualis SA has positioned itself as a creator of new interactive IP media content between broadcast, mobile telephony and the Internet. Target markets include entertainment, advertising and enterprise applications. The company will use a trade name currently being defined.
The 500 m2 facility, equipped with 3 HD cameras with tracking and real-time 3D engines to combine real and virtual images, will initially be based at No-Télé’s Tournai premises. The studio will move to Mons in early 2010, to a new building on the Initialis science park as part of Digital Innovation Valley. The Tours-based studio will then focus on research and development.
Managed by leading figures in the Belgian audiovisual industry (Dominique Janne and Pascal Keiser will be Co-Managing Directors, while the Chairman of the Board of Directors is Jean-Pierre Winberg), Virtualis SA will collaborate with the various research programs of the Walloon Region: Numediart, 3D Media (Polytech Mons and UCL), and the CETIC and Multitel research centers.
The initial investment by private investors is in the region of €4 million.
Phillip Vandervoort, Managing Director of Microsoft BeLux, has already announced a partnership between Virtualis SA Microsoft and MSN. But each of the companies involved will also benefit directly from the collaboration. The energizing effect should have spectacular consequences for everyone.