Media Tech SPAC acquires Drylab
March 28, 2022
Media Tech SPAC, a company formed to undertake one or more acquisitions in the media and technology sectors, has announced that it has reached and entered into a definitive agreement to acquire 100 per cent of the share capital of Drylab, a film and TV production SaaS platform in Scandinavia.
The acquisition is expected to complete in the coming weeks. Once complete, the combined businesses will be renamed Drylab Media Tech to reflect the strengths of the two businesses.
Drylab is founded by multi-award-winning filmmakers John Christian Rosenlund, Audun Vaaler and Stein Kvae. Post completion they will remain in the merged business. Drylab is used in over 90 per cent of productions in Norway and Sweden. The platform has proved itself in the field on hundreds of high-end productions with global distribution from renowned media outlets including Netflix, HBO, Paramount and BBC. Additionally, Drylab has been used on set for productions such as George Clooney’s Catch-22 and more recently the 2022 Oscar-nominated film The Worst Person in the World.
The combination of MTS and Drylab positions the enlarged business for growth through the proprietary technology built by Drylab and the big studio experience and network of the MTS executives. The intention is to use MTS’ network to expand the Drylab platform into the global marketplace and leverage the unprecedented growth being experienced by the film and TV production industry, which in turn is driving demand for solutions that improve the production process.
MTS believes Drylab has a leading edge over its competitors as it the only platform that combines both an on set production tool and digital dailies platform.
Drylab delivers a full suite of functionality to overcome the significant challenges in an industry that is primarily paper based. Key solutions it provides include:
A digital platform that enables reviewing and sharing of filmed takes (dailies) in real-time during production and post-production
Uploads filmed takes with linked metadata to a cloud-based platform overcoming continuity issues
Enhances collaboration between primary stakeholders, saving significant time and costs
Designed to work without internet access, so collaboration can continue in spite of the remoteness of the location
Provides instant and secure distribution of captured media on location to expedite decision-making
MTS executives and senior management have worked together for over 25 years at Warner Bros and have held senior positions at other big studios including Universal and Paramount Pictures. John Mahtani, the Chief Executive Officer of MTS, will become Chief Executive Officer of the combined business. At Warner, he worked on all eight Harry Potter films, Superman, The Matrix, Batman & Dark Knight Rises. On leaving Warner Bros in 2013, he co-founded Cinelab London, creating Europe’s number one film lab, which worked on major productions such as Star Wars 8, Mission Impossible 6, Wonder Woman 2 and No Time To Die, the latest film in the James Bond series.
Mahtani co-founded MTS alongside Rick Senat, who will remain Non-executive Chairman of the combined business. Senat is an established film production and distribution executive, having Executive Produced films such as Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, Fantastic Beasts and The Crimes of Grindelwald and, during his 25 years at Warner Bros, working on key projects such as the Harry Potter films, Batman and Superman. He also managed the negotiations for the acquisition of rights for the Stanley Kubrick films and the film and associated rights in the Harry Potter books.
Mahtani commented: “We are pleased to have come to this agreement with Drylab. John, Audun and Stein have built a world-beating production platform that I wish we had in our early days. The efficiency gains by using such a digital platform would have made our lives easier. The global film and video market is on a significant growth trajectory having reached a value of nearly $234.9 billion in 2020 and expected to reach $318.2 billion by 2025 and $410.6 billion by 2030. We hope to use our network to access markets Drylab haven’t been able to and look forward to reporting on our progress in due course.”
Vaaler commented: “Drylab was founded by filmmakers to develop systems and technology to assist our own filmmaking. We believe we offer solutions that are not offered as a package by anyone else. This mainly paper-based industry of ours is ripe for disruption and we are delighted to join MTS, which will enable us to leverage their unparalleled network and reach new geographies. We look forward to working with them in achieving this vision together.”