Thomson Reuters Saves Money, Scales With a Virtualized Solution

Investor webcasts are fickle: one day Thomson Reuters might stream 300 of them, the next nothing at all.

Dealing with that kind of demand, Thomson Reuters needed a low-cost platform that could scale. To do that, it moved from a manually intensive webcast solution that involved hardware and a combination of service vendors and regional encoding centers, to a fully virtualized solution. At the recent Streaming Media Europe conference in London, Simon Ball, global head of operations, multimedia, and infrastructure at Thomson Reuters, told the audience how his team pulled it off.

"The motivations for change, to move away from this system, were, first and foremost, improved customer experience. That's always first and foremost in any one of our business decisions," Ball said. "We did that by improving the audio quality, by facilitating HLS for mobile, and, in certain situations, we didn't have Flash and we incorporated Flash, as well, for Android and desktop, and the variety of browsers out there. But, also very important in our use case, was increased resiliency and business continuity. One of the things about a regulatory communication is it can't fail; it has to hit the intended audience. Resiliency is a key factor in that."

To create its virtualized solution, Thomson Reuters had to get all its encoding centers working in the same way -- a challenge since they all came from different acquisitions.

"Another component, a very important component, was global platform consolidation," Ball said. "It's not just technology, but workflow, as well. Earlier, I said we had six encoding centers globally. These were evolved from a series of acquisitions via Thomson Financial through the last ten years. Each one of those acquired companies had a different workflow, a different process, a different application, and a different technology stack, as well. The goal was to consolidate this under a single global workflow using the same technology stack."

To hear more about Thomson Reuters's virtualized solution, watch the full presentation below.


Case Study: Virtualising Thomson Reuters Streaming Workflow

Simon Ball, Global Head of Operations, Multimedia Delivery & Infrastructure, Thomson Reuters
Dom Robinson, Co-Founder, Director. id3as & Contributing Editor,, id3as
Andreas Heidoetting, Global Head of Webcast Technology, Markets Division, Thomson Reuters

Thomson Reuters have been producing tens of thousands of live events a year for their investor relations clients. They wanted to scale up, and also wanted to reduce their fixed costs. With the development of a fully virtualised solution, the company has been able to achieve 40%-50% cost reduction, remove scaling limits, and improve service level agreements. This session will provide invaluable lessons from the frontlines for anyone considering a migration to a cloud-based workflow.

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