A serial entrepreneur with eight company launches under his belt, Marko discusses what brought him into the world of translation from a background that spans everything from economics and leadership, to language teaching and…sailing. In his view, translation offers the opportunity to build a company on tech and scale a business.
He talks about automation and machine translation, building Catapult — a solution for companies that want to translate in-house — and the need to remain focused and disciplined when developing translation products.
First up, Florian and Esther discuss the language industry news of the week — which saw three M&A and Funding announcements.
The duo talk about Rome-based Translated’s USD 25m investment from Ardian, which propelled the LSP to a nine-figure valuation; Argos Multilingual’s acquisition of Chillistore, a linguistic quality assurance provider based in Ireland; and Big Language Solutions’ acquisition of UK-based Dora Wirth Languages (DWL), a life sciences specialist founded back in the 1960s.
Stepping away from corporate transactions, Esther talks about media localization provider ZOO Digital’s 2021 annual report, which detailed a shift in their service mix toward Media Services (media packaging, content preparation, etc.), while the Localization division was flat in the 12 months to March 2021 on the back of a temporary, pandemic-linked decline in subtitling. Cloud-based dubbing services still grew substantially to USD 9m, and ZOO said March–June was their best ever quarter.
Florian also muses about the minefield of intellectual property rights and licensing when it comes to voices, after Vice covered the case of a voice actor suing social media giant TikTok, which allegedly acquired and replicated via AI the actor’s voice without her knowledge.