US-based media localization provider Visual Data has acquired European rival, EVA Localisation. The transaction closed on May 10, 2023, around a year after Visual Data made an initial strategic investment in the France-based company. The terms of the acquisition are not being disclosed.
John Trautman, CEO of Visual Media, told Slator the deal will add to Visual Data’s localization supply chain and extend capacity with dubbing studios and accessibility services in France, Germany, and Spain. EVA also extends the company’s “footprint in digital media and complete workflow management,” he said.
Asked about the evolution of the relationship between the two companies since Visual Data made the initial investment in EVA, Trautman said the two have worked together to offer a “complimentary suite of services” to customers.
“We have also been building out a unified Global Customer Management system, integrating our sales teams, and working on a global security and technology infrastructure across the locations,” he added.
EVA’s CEO, Angel Martin, will stay on with Visual Data to lead EVA’s European studios together with the existing regional and global leadership, working closely with Visual Data’s Simon Constable, EVP of Global Language Services. “Right now, we are maintaining the respective brands,” Trautman said.
Formerly known as Eclair Versioning and Accessibility, EVA completed a rebrand of its group companies in France, Germany, and Spain in 2022. The company generated EUR 33.5m (USD 36m) in 2022, growing ca. 37% from the previous year.
In-Territory Subtitling and Dubbing
According to Trautman, demand for subtitling and dubbing is now plateauing. “While we are seeing volumes leveling off in many languages and a small trend downward as most of the streaming platforms have completed their territory launches, quality in-territory dubbing and subtitling remains key,” he said.
The CEO continued, “customers are also looking to vendors to support greater end-to-end servicing, which is why providing exceptional local servicing with scale remains our focus.”
Trautman highlighted the benefit of operating studios in France, Spain, and Germany, saying these key European hubs allow Visual Data to expand its language and digital media services into Europe while also expanding EVA’s client base. Nonetheless, “costs [in these markets] continue to be a challenge in localization with the rising costs of talent and operational expenses.”
Describing Visual Data’s M&A strategy going forward, Trautman said, “We remain opportunistic for expansion into other key language territories. Our strategy for many years has been to increase our capabilities through growth and investment where our clients need us most and we are steadfast in that commitment.”