On September 9, 2016 Boris FX announced the acquisition of GenArts, the developers of renowned Sapphire VFX plug-ins. It has been an exciting time for our combined teams and now that the dust has settled, we’d like take the opportunity to address questions that our customers and partners have been asking. Please review and if you have additional questions, feel free to contact us!
Boris FX, Sapphire and mocha. Three industry leading products, under one roof.
Q. What is the news behind the acquisition?
Boris FX acquired GenArts from its previous owners to form a VFX development powerhouse, putting the teams from Boris FX, Imagineer Systems and GenArts under one parent company. This significant merger now allows the product teams behind popular post-production industry tools (Sapphire, Continuum and mocha) the ability to work closely together to advance and improve the core products. Ultimately, we believe our combined customer base (editors, artists, designers and colorists) will benefit by bringing these talented and experienced development teams together.
Q. Why did Boris FX acquire GenArts?
Sapphire’s outstanding reputation as a premier tool in the visual effects industry is a perfect complement to the Boris FX family of products. As one of the original independent plug-in companies, Boris FX has a history of delivering high quality software solutions for the film and television post-production industry through both development and partnerships.
For example in 2014, Boris FX acquired Imagineer Systems, the UK-based developer of mocha, Academy Award-winning planar tracking tools. The subsequent merger and technology collaborations has resulted in big wins for the post industry: Boris Continuum Complete 10 plug-ins now include integrated mocha tracking technology inside of almost every filter; and mocha Pro 5 is now available as plug-in on many new host applications including Avid, Adobe and OFX.
In regards to GenArts, both Boris FX and Genarts saw a perfect opportunity. Boris FX and GenArts share a similar history and ethos; both companies are based in Boston, MA and both helped pioneer the visual effects plug-in industry over 20 years ago. Additionally, both companies have strategic customer and partner relationships with the largest names in film and broadcast post.
Q. What does this mean for Sapphire and the GenArts team?
The future is bright for Sapphire! Sapphire continues to be developed, supported and sold as the company's flagship plug-in package for editing, visual effects and motion graphics. Sapphire 10 was launched in September and we already have exciting ideas for Sapphire 11. Sapphire owners can be assured that the software they know and love will continue to be developed and improved.
Watch Sapphire 10 First Look
The GenArts team has already relocated to the Boris FX office in downtown Boston, MA and is already successfully collaborating cross-company in development, marketing and support. GenArts.com currently serves as the main web portal for all Sapphire sales and customer support. We have been adding more cross-product training materials and customers should expect to see improved service across the board in the near future.
For staff, key GenArts are making an impact to help lead the combined group of companies. Gary Oberbrunner (Chief Scientist of GenArts) has been appointed CTO; Nick Rodriguez has been appointed Director of Global Sales; and Brian Fox as Director of Product Marketing.
Boris Yamnitsky CEO/Founder of Boris FX and Gary Oberbrunner co-founder and chief scientist of GenArts
Q. How does this affect the products you sell?
Current products will be continued to be sold and developed. In the future, customers should expect to see bundle options for product combinations. For example, when Boris FX acquired Imagineer Systems, mocha Pro was included in the Boris Box Set. Since many customers own combinations such as: BCC + Sapphire OR Sapphire + mocha Pro OR BCC + mocha Pro, we will certainly look to explore more product bundles.
Q. What does this mean for technical support? Who should I call for support?
There is no change in support contacts and we foresee many positive support developments coming for customers in the future. Customers will have better access to local product specialists in Boston, California, New York, London and Australia. Main technical and sales support will be handled from our combined Boston team.
Q. How will products be developed in the future?
Similar to the Boris FX and Imagineer Systems relationship, each product team will continue to pursue their individual goals, while cooperating on research & technology. The technical teams will also look to standardize on tool sets such as licensing and development build systems when possible to streamline process and better serve the customer base.
Q. Will mocha be integrated into Sapphire?
While we can not promise this feature, we understand that integrated planar tracking tools is a popular feature request among Sapphire users. The product management team is actively looking at this very type of “win/win” technology sharing opportunities to improve and develop Sapphire. If you are a long time Sapphire user and interested in joining our beta testers group, please contact us.
Q. What are the plans for the future products?
While it is early to say, we are confident that Boris FX, Sapphire and mocha Pro users will see major features in future releases. As post production roles evolve, there is even more need for task specific visual effects tools and plug-ins to assist in the process - to help editors and artists be more creative and hit their deadlines. Together the Boris, GenArts and Imagineer teams look forward to your questions, feedback, suggestions and support.