Under New Ownership, Zeplay Looks To Re-Energize The Replay Market

Zeplay, a provider of low-cost instant replay systems for sports and live events, is now under new ownership after two former Tight Rope Media executives that worked closely with the product line left to buy out the assets.

Andrew Starks and Brandon MacKenzie, Tightrope’s former CEO and VP of Engineering, respectively, have formed a new company, called Zeplay LLC, and plan to continue to develop the product and exhibit its new incarnation at the 2018 NAB Show.

Starks and MacKenzie had worked at Zeplay for more than a decade. They said the new Zeplay replay system would feature new hardware and software that will facilitate new features and capabilities. The new Zeplay LLC will exhibit in the “StartUp Loft” area of the Las Vegas Convention Center (in the North Hall, booth N2632SUL-B) during this year’s show.

As inventor of Zeplay, MacKenzie’s passion for live sports production initially planted the seeds for the product. His goal of bringing an intuitive and affordable solution to market that didn’t require extensive training or specialized operators was quickly realized, as Zeplay became a popular solution for production trucks, TV stations, schools and venues seeking to balance professional production requirements with modest budgets.

As Tightrope’s co-founder and long-time CEO, Starks was responsible for the strategic business initiatives behind Zeplay, helping to establish its reputation as the instant replay solution with the best price, reliability, speed and feature set.

“Zeplay is a product that we love to make,” said Starks. “We are investing heavily in its future with the goal of building on Zeplay’s core strength—simplicity—by evolving it for the changing needs of dynamic, live productions. This is especially important in a broadcast market that has rapidly embraced software-oriented solutions, and software has always been the real driving force behind Zeplay’s operation.”

He said the initial roadmap for the company will focus on enhancing the Zeplay hardware, which offers 4x4 replay capability. This allows Zeplay operators to focus on the live action, while delivering replays and packages quickly. The system includes a built-in multiviewer, dedicated controller, native multi-format clip import/export capabilities and real-time sequence editing tools.

“When I set out to make Zeplay, I started with what I wanted to see in a replay system,” said MacKenzie. “[Existing customers] love the uncomplicated way it works, its speed, and how much they can do with it. They trust it because it makes them look good. That’s what drives me to push this system even further. We share our customers’ excitement and we are confident that our business strategy and development efforts will bring more stations, trucks and stadiums on board.”

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