Factual superindie Zinc Media Group has appointed ITN’s post production director, Olly Strous,  to the new role of Chief Technology Officer.

The role will “not only help grow the company’s production capacity, but it will also help drive innovation in the way that programmes are created and delivered.”

Mark Browning, CEO, Zinc Media Group, says: “Today’s great programmes rely on great technology. It is the backbone of pretty much every creative process.  The Covid pandemic, has put outstanding technology to the forefront of the production process and accelerated change.  In 2020 we made a significant investment into the Group’s post production capacity to help us become more efficient in the way we finish and deliver programmes.  However, we know that there is so much more we can do creatively, with the right kind of strategic vision in this area.

“I’m thrilled that Olly Strous is joining us as our first CTO.  He is a rare breed: outstanding at technical innovation, driven commercially but led creatively and he has excellent communication and people skills. Not only has he driven ITN’s technical growth in its post production capacity, he has led the charge in remote production and won significant new business along the way.  He will be a fantastic asset for Zinc.”

Olly Strous comes from ITN, where he is Director of Post Production, a role which combines overseeing the post production and production technology needs for the whole of ITN Productions and also driving the organisation’s full service post production business  working with third-party production companies.

The latter saw Strous win the contract to work with ITV Studios on I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here! which involved installing connectivity to remotely edit in London from equipment on site in Wales, in order to deliver 20 live shows over three weeks.  He also secured a similar contract for Dancing on Ice, three years in a row, as well as for a number of popular documentary series for Netflix, and Channel 4’s Oscar-nominated For Sama, which was two years in the making.

Under his leadership, Strous has also seen post production at ITN boom, with the number of edit suites growing from four to 122 since 2013, 55% of those being installed in the past year using remote technology that had been in development since 2018.  Strous joined ITN in 2013 as Head of Post Production, moving up to become Director of Post Production in 2019.  Prior to ITN, he held roles at Zig Zag and Fever Media.

Olly Strous adds: “Technology plays a vital part of any production company’s creative and commercial success. Innovation through technology enables companies to diversify revenues, drive growth through smart, scalable solutions, improve efficiency and become more responsive to clients’ requirements.

“Zinc is an extremely exciting organisation, at a pivotal moment in its development.  It has huge potential creatively and commercially and an exciting opportunity to drive forward its Nations and Regions offering, while expanding internationally.  I’m thrilled to be joining such a fantastic team at such a time of growth.”

In 2020, Zinc Media Group invested heavily in its post production facilities, serving both its new London headquarters and its team working remotely.  That investment and the creation of this new post is part of the wider Zinc Media Group transformation plan announced by the CEO at the end of 2019.

Zinc Media Group is home to Blakeway, Brook Lapping, Films of Record, Tern Television and the recently-launched Red Sauce as well as Zinc Communicate, its agency division producing TV and digital content for advertisers, publishers, media owners and rights holders.

Strous takes up his new position in the Summer of 2021.

Jon Creamer