In this interview for Computer Arts, Partner and Group Managing Director, Ian Hambleton, explains the reasons behind the new Output Group merge and restructure.
What made you merge into Output Group?
It’s a restructure that we’ve been thinking about for a while, both in terms of what it would mean for each of the creative studios and how we would communicate it to existing and potential clients. Our previous model placed Studio Output as the owner of Found Studio and Studio Output Beijing, however we came to realise that this caused confusion when we talked about the services we provide and how to sell our offer. The new Output Group merge and restructure is our solution to this. A new model that will get everyone working better together, helping us to grow each team and the group.
What does Output Group mean for each individual team?
Without the recognised group structure, we were missing the opportunity to upsell the skills and knowledge of the wider teams. The Output Group merge gives each studio the freedom and autonomy to be at the forefront of their specialism, becoming industry leaders in their own right.
What is the main goal of this merging?
To give clarity and flexibility for clients by forming a modern family of creative businesses shaping brands for the future. It means our clients can tailor our service to their needs for the best quality outcome possible, whether that is a fully integrated digital design and immersive content brief, or solely video content. Consumer and digital insight will feed into all studios within the network, providing brands and clients with a framework for creative ideas and design craft.
What role will Allez! Studio play in the coming months?
Allez! Studio will create exciting, large-scale immersive content for experiential projects and events. The company already has an impressive track record in producing immersive content for brands, including a live projection-mapping piece for producer and musician Labrinth’s performance at last year’s MTV Music Awards in Glasgow.
What experiences will you be able to take from your previous role into this new chapter? Have you learnt any hard lessons?
We’ve seen this trend of immersive branded content filtering into the industry, but really wanted to jump on it before it was too late. I’ve personally been ‘banging on’ about the new digital landscape for quite some time. This is effectively the final transition of digital into real-world environments. The hard lessons we’ve learned in this area are more to do with innovation and R&D. Many of the projects we take on are not things that have been done before. Often we don’t know how we’ll achieve these to begin with, we just have to trust in our own skills and our fabulous network of collaborators.
What are you most excited about in the coming months?
In the coming months we’re most excited about seeing the first projects coming through Allez! We’re launching a new immersive digital piece for SAP Miller and GMR Marketing, working with image makers and data specialists Field.io, as well as working with the internal Output Group teams. We’ve also got some projects in the pipeline for Sony Music and a few other household brand names you’ll have heard of. Watch this studio!