Meet Thomas Heinzer, Nevion’s CEO, based in Norway.
This is a special edition of ‘A Q&A with the Architects’ as we celebrate Nevion’s 25th anniversary and the latest appointment of Thomas Heinzer as our CEO. Before we cut the cake and pop the champagne, we asked Thomas to share some insights into his career journey and highlights at Nevion.
Can you tell us about your career journey at Nevion?
It’s incredible to think I’ve now been associated with Nevion for 25 years! Since co-founding the company in 1996, I’ve wore a variety of hats and taken on four different positions in that time. Between 2004 and 2011 I held the position of CTO, in which I oversaw the technical direction of the company. I then served in the management team as EVP Strategic Projects before being appointed CEO in August this year.
What have been some standout highlights from your time at Nevion?
There have been so many! Being acquired by Sony in 2020 is certainly one of the top moments as the partnership has allowed us to add even more value and reimagine experiences for our customers. Another highlight has been Nevion’s drive towards virtualizing media workflows – we backed IP and SDN technology very early, and transformed the company from a hardware product vendor to a provider of software-defined solutions in just a few years. Going a bit further back, another source of pride to me is introduction of VikinX in the mid-90s, which has revolutionized the routing switcher market, and making fiber transport commonly used in the industry with our Flashlink product line. Returning to the present, a recent highlight was the incredible large-scale distributed production events which Nevion enabled, such as Euro 2020 and Tokyo 2020.
What three words would you use to describe your role?
My role can be encapsulated in these three words: innovation, dedication and responsibility. Nevion has been on a journey to reinvent the future of broadcast production, leading the shift from baseband to IP, virtualization and cloud technology. The drive to innovate our products – and the industry – has always been flowing through our veins, and now as CEO, I’ll ensure Nevion continues to be defined by that. I am also responsible not only for the direction of the business, but also for all its great people, which I consider my most important task.
What is your favorite thing about working for Nevion?
Without doubt, the dedication of our employees. At Nevion, we have an outstanding group of people, who make the (almost) impossible, possible, who are driven by common goals and really thrive from helping each other, our customers and partners achieve their potential. Without every single one of them, Nevion would not have become the industry pioneer that it is today.
What do you enjoy best about working in the broadcast industry?
I’ve had the joy and the privilege to witness Nevion power numerous major sporting and live events across the globe, such as the Olympics, the FIFA World Cup, and US presidential inaugurations. The fact that our solutions are enabling hundreds of millions (and occasionally even billions) of viewers to be part of spectacular experiences brings me great pride and excitement.
What new technology excites you the most in the broadcasting world?
The fact that the broadcasting industry has been increasingly moving towards IP/SDN technologies and replacing proprietary tools excites me the most. The shift presents many benefits and opportunities for businesses to increase their agility and fuel disruptive change in the way video is being consumed. It is certainly an exciting step in the evolution of our industry, one that I look forward to being part of.
Nevion has been at the forefront of change and innovation in the broadcast sector over the last 25 years. What can the industry expect from Nevion next?
As pioneers in the industry, Nevion will continue to help our customers overcome the boundaries of live production by driving change to standards-based IP/SDN technology. Together with Sony, we have a bigger footprint to influence transformation and architect the future of media production. After 25 years at Nevion, I remain genuinely excited about the company and its prospects.