COPA90 is the largest independent football media business in the world, reaching over 100 million people across a multitude of online platforms and social media channels. With a unique brand of fan-centric content, COPA90 has become the hub for a global football-obsessed youth culture that is driving the exploding popularity of the sport. According to the Nielsen World Football Report released just before the 2018 World Cup in Russia, “the global reach of football, or soccer, is unequaled among sports in terms of value to media and sponsors.”
In many ways, COPA90’s model is ushering in a new era of international sports production. Made possible by the Internet and advances in IP technology, this era rests on the capacity to quickly and easily move media files around the globe and store them inaccessible, searchable systems. To meet the demands of major sports events, COPA90 relies on a close partnership with BASE Media Cloud for managed multi-cloud services, integrating Signiant Media Shuttle for large-scale global file transfers.
One of the best examples of COPA90’s dominance was their record-breaking coverage of the 2018 World Cup in Russia last summer. This case study covers how they did it with the help of BASE Media Cloud, Signiant Media Shuttle and an innovative model for capturing unheard of volumes of content from fans around the world.
Creator Fans Around the World
Throughout the World Cup, COPA90 not only posted their own professionally produced content, but also video from a legion of 230 handpicked “creator fans” from over 40 countries. Generating volumes of footage, creator fans on the ground at the World Cup in Russia captured fans’ reactions to critical moments of triumph and failure. Others recorded responses at gatherings of people watching those same matches around the world.
And then there’s the meta-commentary-generating-meta-experience videos (you, watching them talk, as they watch athletes or fans, which makes you feel like you’re watching together) — a magic formula for building fandom empires, pioneered and perfected by the YouTube generation. In fact, COPA90 started off as a humble YouTube channel back in 2012 and has since become a distributed network across every social platform that matters to young fans, including Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter and international platforms like Weibo in China and VK in Russia. The company is also building out its owned and operated channels and has built a distribution network of more than 200 publishers, influencers and broadcasters worldwide.
“COPA90 is How Football Feels - it’s the emotional connection with the game, the world of fan culture, that helps us engage so many young football fans around the world. It’s also why so many brands, broadcasters, and federations look to partner with us,” said Barry Flanigan, Chief Product Officer at COPA90.
“Nowhere was that more evident last year than at the FIFA World Cup in Russia where we scaled our publishing output to more than six thousand content assets across multiple platforms, generating more than 750 million views through the tournament.”
“We simply couldn’t have scaled our operations for the World Cup without creating robust cloud-based infrastructure, supported by our partners BASE Media Cloud and Signiant.”
Ramping Up Cloud Technology
COPA90’s exceptional reach has attracted the attention of big broadcasters and brand sponsors. However, their business model diverges from the old guard equally as much as their content does. To complement their own in-house production COPA90 has built a global community of fans creating content on their behalf around the world. In this way they keep a light core team and rely on their ability to rapidly expand content output, technology and budget as needed.
COPA90 works with BASE Media Cloud to access the latest cloud-based technology, on demand. Providing access to near-unlimited compute resources without requiring heavy investment in on-premises software and hardware, cloud solutions are a perfect match for a high-growth online content company covering a huge international event, especially if they can essentially rent what is needed for the event.
For the World Cup, COPA90 contracted BASE Media Cloud to provide the cloud storage and file transfer technology necessary for bringing huge volumes of content back to their facilities in London and New York.
BASE Media Cloud plus Signiant Media Shuttle
BASE Media Cloud is a unique multi-cloud managed services provider for Media & Entertainment companies, with a vertical focus on Sports, Online Video and Distribution. Their business model rests on seeking out the best cloud-native SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) solutions in the industry and connecting them back to their own centralized cloud gateway network and cloud storage platform. For fast, media file transfers over IP networks — both between people around the world and to the cloud — BASE leverages Signiant’s Media Shuttle for over 30 of its international media clients.
“Signiant has been one of our main SaaS product partners since we launched in 2015. We now have multiple companies all around the world using our Signiant Media Shuttle and cloud storage platform to upload, download, and share broadcast deliveries, said Ben Foakes, Managing Director at Base Media Cloud.
Media Shuttle is a really rock-solid solution, which has run consistently on our platform since 2015, dealing with Petabytes of content ingest and delivery.”
Working with COPA90 is a perfect opportunity for BASE Media Cloud to show off what they do best — developing a strategy and quickly spinning up specific services from their suite of best-in-class partner solutions. Companies like COPA90 have a lot of different workflow requirements for specific projects, amounting to different business models within the same business.
Supporting COPA90’s World Cup coverage relied on upon quickly transferring massive amounts of files and making them continuously accessible in BASE Media Cloud storage. Thus, Media Shuttle was central to their strategy, not only for getting footage from COPA90 producers and creator fans back to London and New York, but they also used Media Shuttle for the migration of half a petabyte of data into BASE Media Cloud’s storage platform for COPA90’s secure long-term archive.
Adjacent to that, BASE Media Cloud runs a fully managed Media Asset Management and content sales portal service for COPA90, built in partnership with Wazee Digital (a Veritone Company), where they perform automated encoding in AWS, streaming and playback of content, and enable global users to view and manage COPA90 content. It also serves as a centralized library with metadata allowing for easy search. All of this is cloud hosted and managed by BASE Media Cloud as part of their multi-cloud service portfolio.
“What we are providing for COPA90 is unique in that it allows a business with a minimal on-premise infrastructure to do really big events and to work at a global scale,” says Foakes. “We provide cloud storage, but we don’t charge egress fees, so the costs of storing and transiting masses of data with BASE Media Cloud are very predictable and manageable for our clients.”
“We are bringing the power of multi-cloud services, including Signiant, when and where they need it most, without any of the hassles of looking after the technology in-house.”