Every Great Company Has A Great Story…
BRADLEY INC has become the leading videocentric media group for businesses, brands and organisations worldwide.
We’re still not entirely sure how we managed it but here are some of the highs and lows we can remember. Enjoy! 🙂
It all sounds very glamorous but the truth is the group actually began it’s life in a shed in York. Founder Nick Bradley, a former Ad-Man and Board Director of Chrysalis Plc, rented the space from a friend, Tony Baxter; Tony owns the printing company CEEJAY UK and for reasons unknown to anybody had purchased an old wooden church and relocated it to his carpark. Business was brisk and before long BRADLEY were representing a number of local businesses including the now defunct railway giant Jarvis.
Won £300K worth of business in first 3 months trading
Fabulous client management (Debbie)
New Business development (Jenny)
A chance meeting in 2008 changed everything. Nick met Paul Hodgson, a former Executive Director of BBC Worldwide. Paul had enjoyed a distinguished career in television including senior roles within ITV and Carlton. Over a beer and a handshake it was agreed that Paul would join the business the next day and they would focus exclusively on video. They were convinced that video would be the next big thing and correctly predicted that future advances in internet speeds and devices would lead to a huge demand for motion content. The next morning the pair rolled up their sleeves, politely fired all their ‘traditional’ clients and started again.
Their first venture was the launch of BRADLEY.TV, a corporate video production company. Nick built the website and began selling. Paul took care of clients and operational matters. As work began to roll in Paul’s experience as a seasoned Producer and Nick’s experience as an exciting Director proved invaluable. A decade on and BRADLEY.TV has produced over 4,000 successful projects for more than 400 clients worldwide.
It wasn’t all plain sailing. The economic crash later that year focused minds on alternative ways video could be exploited. They built a primitive version of VIDEOCLOUD themselves using a Mac, Filemaker Software and a Flash streaming server. It was horrible but it worked. Their logic was simple; Clients could proof and sign-off work faster which in turn meant quicker payments.
Sony Z1 workflow
Filming in South Africa for Cancer Research and The Bobby Moore Fund (Ruth)
Gypsy diesel dump into local water supply / Three months of pong and shed evacuation
Baxter lawnmower carpark prank
Baxter carrot soup in skip prank
Decommissioned Baxter’s outdoor WC
A visit to a customer in Leeds city centre led to the discovery of their current headquarters. Whilst parked on Queen Street in the centre of the financial district they spotted an old silk factory surrounded by swanky modern offices. Monarch House was very cool. It looked like it should have been located in down-town Manhattan. The ground floor was vacant and the next day a viewing was arranged. Halfway through the meeting actor Andy Devine (Shadrack Dingle from Emmerdale!) turned up with a young lady in white stilettos and asked if he could snort something to celebrate. Unsure as to whether he was joking or not the estate agent readily agreed a deal and left.
U2 at Don Valley
Sodom The Movie fiasco / Hollywood nonsense / Tin cup souvenir
Moved the worlds heaviest desk (again)
Tired of expensive equipment and studio hire BRADLEY.TV invested in their own fully equipped HD studios and Studio B was born. Over the next couple of years three separate filming spaces were developed; a 3x5M green screen facility, a live broadcast area and a general purpose studio. Clients also benefited from dedicated lounge, two make-up and stylist rooms alongside showers, catering facilities and loading bays for larger set builds. There was nothing else like it in central Leeds.
Sony F3 workflow
Luke’s abnormal shed fetish
Nick’s 40th (The TonTine)
Nick beating Luke in a 100M sprint challenge, convincingly
A great year for new business development. Across the board the group secured 50 new clients and achieved a doubling in turnover and staff numbers.
The most significant development was a £0.5M contract win with the UK’s leading bookmaker, Ladbrokes. This working relationship has endured and they remain a great client to this day.
The infamous Yorkshire Mafia Showreel (Read the story HERE)
Engaged with Zero Above in Colchester to launch VIDEOCLOUD V#2
Registered UK, US and European Trademarks for VIDEOCLOUD, VIDEOTXT and VIDEOSMS
Opened Studio B, #2 (large green screen studio)
This was the year when the directors got really serious about video related software development. Building on the achievements in 2011 the group found themselves involved in full blown development projects, patent applications, trademarks in the UK, USA and Europe and the development of several world first technologies. It wasn’t without it’s challenges but they came through it all stronger and wiser than ever.
Began Patent Process for VIDEOTXT
Engaged with Glowlabs web development team in London
Glowlabs go bust the week before Christmas then refuse to hand over code
New Years Eve emergency court hearing
Opened Studio B, #2 (general production studio)
Advancements into video related technology continued and a team of in-house developers was established operating under the CODE B banner. VIDEOTXT became a viable reality and customers began using it as a marketing channel. One of the first was KPMG who used it globally as a replacement for their internal communications emails.
Won legal battle / Recovered code
Established in-house software team (5 developers)
Launched VIDEOCLOUD V#3
Invented and launched VIDEOTXT service V#1
Opened STUDIO B, #3 (live broadcasting suite)
Secured UK short code 60666
Action at altitude! Another business was added to the portfolio with the successful launch of AERIALCLIPS.COM, and online stock footage library selling top quality aerial footage globally.
The directors also spotted an increasing demand from businesses for professional live streaming of events. Armed with the knowledge that satellite truck transmissions were insanely expensive they set about developing a new service that capitalised on new bonded 4G technology. Combining 16 4G SIM cards in a backpack with an HD camera give them enough bandwidth to delver precisely the same live output as broadcaster (minus the truck!) at a fraction of the cost. A new business, VIDEOLIVE was launched and one of the first customers to take advantage of it was the advertising agency M&C Saatchi.
Sony FS7 workflow
Invested in Promise A Class Raid storage system
Invested in fibre optics throughout building
Launched AERIALCLIPS.COM / Global aerial footage stock library
Launched VIDEOLIVE / Live broadcasting service using bonded 4G cellular as an alternative to satellite transmission
Business in Bombay / Hired a second Mumbai based development team to manage ongoing frameworks
Filmed in Spain for Jet2
Secured UK short code 60888 after a silly complaint from somebody that found 60666 offensive (That’s not the real reason, see below)
Secured matching USA short code 60888
Live broadcast went crazy for BRADLEY.TV in 2014. Their crews delivered the world’s first multi-cam cellular transmission to Facebook on behalf of Boots. They broadcast live from the flagship Fleet Street store in London for 90 minutes giving customers a four-way interactive player and the ability to ask questions and receive live answers from the panel at the end of the show. (Watch highlights video HERE)
VIDEOCLOUD begins trading in USA
Launched VIDEOSTRATEGY a strategic video marketing consultancy
4 x new Mac Pro edit stations
Soundproofed Studio B
Produced the award winning Randox corporate video
Cinematic lens sets introduced as standard
As far as video production was concerned this year was all about ‘National Reach, Local Focus’ whatever that means! You can read about it HERE. Basically it led to BRADLEY.TV having offices and producers in eleven cities across the UK; Belfast, Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Glasgow, Leeds, Liverpool, London, Manchester, Newcastle and Sheffield.
Six months wasted listening to Pallister and talking to Panavista, New York
Bored of the ‘b’ logo, Nick set about rebranding the entire group himself. A ‘star’ became the star of the show and for the first time a script font was introduced alongside the new monochromatic colour palette and singular accent colour for each brand. Their beloved Gotham Narrow survived!
CODE B, their video development business, was moved to Greece and an awesome new software team was hired working on UK time.
A new business was added to the portfolio; STATISTICS.TV. The group were determined to be first-to-market (again) with a new concept they called ‘video visualisation’. The directors had been toying with the idea of turning data into video for a while. To make it work a new intelligent transcoding engine would need to be built and integrated with VIDEOCLOUD. After a basic proof of concept had been deployed the team got serious about the service and global marketplace they could tap into. Back-end development was completed in total secrecy the UK (Cambridge & Leeds) and the front-end build was done by the CODE B software engineers.
Launch of STATISTICS.TV V#1
Three months wasted in talks with Dave Bell and Christoper Smith (not his real name)
Hired our own full-time drone pilot (James)
Filmed in Hong Kong for Cathay Pacific
Filmed in Cincinnati, Ohio for Texthelp
Filmed in China for Belzona
Began public sector tendering
Thank You Ladbrokes: VIDEO
VIDEOROCKET is coming… You shoot. We Edit.
SPORTBLAST is coming… Top Secret. We’ll let you know 🙂