Universal Images Group (UIG) and the Virtual Picture Desk have opened a New York office, adding both managers and content to their group. The Manhattan location joins their other current offices in Chicago, USA; Rome, Italy and Chelmsford in the UK. The UIG business has achieved triple digit revenue growth through distribution and electronic publishing in the past year, making it essential to provide a further production and editing center in USA.
UIG had acquired last summer the business of Omni Photos, an educational photo agency based in New York City. It has now completed the transfer of the digital assets into its database (for global representation) and has added over 50 new photographers and artists to its roster of contributors. The new facility in New York allows UIG to add further content and contributors through further acquisitions.
UIG has appointed Lindsey Nicholson as Editorial Director for North America. Lindsey, based in New York, will manage all content from North American image providers as well as digitized images from all photographers, artists, illustrators and other contributors from around the world.
Nicholson was formerly with Jupiter Images where she managed and produced images for their ThinkStock and Creatas brands. She previously worked as Director of Photography for a number of stock houses in the industry including; The Stock Market Photo Agency (now part of Corbis); Index Stock Imagery (now part of Photolibrary/Getty), and WireImage (now part of Getty).
"Lindsey brings 25 years of incredible industry experience to UIG and her rapport, knowledge of and understanding of content requirements and with photographers will help us to add further premium picture assets for representation," said George Sinclair, Founder and Executive Director of the Virtual Picture Desk (their content management facilities business in 2002) and Universal Images Group (the global distribution business in 2008).
UIG currently has more than 850,000 Rights Managed premium images in its distribution database and 3.2+ million educational images for the electronic publishing and online education markets. UIG is the exclusive provider of still and video content for Britannica’s Image Quest subscription services for schools, colleges, universities and public libraries.
To maintain the company’s revenue growth, which will more than double again in 2012 from last year, UIG has centralized the management of its distribution network into one location in USA, and its technology center in Melbourne, Australia utilizing cloud-computing technology for storage and management of its databases, which will grow to 15 terabytes for content in the coming year.
UIG has also appointed Danny Russelman as Director of Distributor Sales and Operations. He is also based in New York. Russelman brings 18 years of industry experience in sales and management with prior operational roles at Photolibrary, Index Stock and Peter Arnold.
In addition to the content from photographers, artists and illustrators, UIG represents a number of leading collections around the world. These include De Agostini Editore, Mondadori, Leemage, The Granger Collection, the Wellcome Trust, the National Portrait Gallery, Encyclopaedia Britannica, DK Images, the National Geographic Society plus pictures from a number of museums, galleries and historic archives. UIG has entered into many new agreements this year already, and now also represents Amana Images Japan, Auscape Australia, PYMCA, Visions of America, the Japan Travel Bureau, India Pictures, Superstock Fine Art, Alinari Archives, Photoshot Nature, Werner Forman and The British Library.
"The continued growth in our distribution database now allows us to work with global partners in vertical markets such as online education, electronic publishing and merchandizing and with international specialist agents for editorial, vintage and educational content," stated George Sinclair.