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Witbe’s Planche, EPIX’s Ziv, and OTT Digital Services’ Harnsberger Take Top Honors at the OTT Video Executive Summit

OTT trophy winners awarded by a forum of fellow executives.

November 14, 2014 — Three industry executives claimed top honors at the recent Over-the-Top Video Executive Summit ( held this week in New York. Witbe’s Senior Vice President of Innovation and Technology, Jean-Michel Planche, earned the first-place prize by being awarded the “OTT Genius” crystal trophy. He was joined by Amit Ziv, Vice President of Business Development and Strategy for EPIX, who won the “OTT Expert” trophy, and Steve Harnsberger, President of OTT Digital Services, who won the “OTT Trender” trophy. These awards are significant since they were voted on in real-time by a prestigious group of 88 OTT thought leaders, including more than 30 CEOs and CXOs, representing companies across the OTT industry including content, broadcasters, service providers, and enabling technologies. Participating companies included Verizon, Comcast, Orange, Intelsat, DIRECTV, Akamai, Netflix, Roku, Asia TV, EPIX, NBC, FreeCast, QVC, LG, Ooyala, Ericsson, Synacor, and many others. Speakers and attendees at the OTT Video Executive Summit participated in a game system that awarded points throughout the day to speakers and commenters who provided strategic insights on a range of topics. The three executives with the most points at the end of the day were awarded the trophies as voted by their peers.

The OTT Video Executive Summit brought together thought leaders in the industry to discuss topics crucial to the development of streaming video and evolving Pay TV business models. In addition to experts and executives, the conference included a “Trender Panel”, or focus group, of everyday people from various demographics. The event was also gamefied, with the leading point-getter being awarded the “OTT Genius” trophy.

“I really enjoyed being part of the OTT Video Executive Summit. It offers an innovative format, which is a real game changer compared to a lot of other conferences. It is refreshing to get a chance to share our ideas in a dynamic and interactive way,” said Witbe’s Mr. Planche. “On top of everything, being awarded the OTT Genius trophy by such an incredible assembly of real life experts means a lot to me. It is a great honor and a beautiful acknowledgement of my last 25 working years, during which I was dedicated to user-centric technology solutions and driven by an Internet-minded philosophy. OTT is clearly one of these solutions, just as is our new way of thinking about quality of experience monitoring.”

Mr. Planche impressed the audience while participating on two panels: “State of the OTT industry: Net neutrality, industry consolidation, and the emerging new OTT ecosytem” about the major trends in the industry, and “You're gonna break the Internet with that thing! Could OTT really do that?” which was about delivering a quality OTT user experience despite the challenges of Internet bandwidth being consumed by streaming video.


“The OTT Video Executive Summit was the place to be in 2014, while the OTT market explodes from millions to billions.  The OTT Summit by Trender Research was an intimate and insightful gathering where leading executives and everyday Trenders saw firsthand that OTT Video is no longer just a market trend, but a leading market force worldwide,” said OTT Digital Services’ Steve Harnsberger. “Cord cutting is inevitable. The cable bundle will crumble, and we all now know, OTT is creating a brave new world, so get on board or be left behind. That was my number one take-away from the Summit.”


“Congratulations to Jean-Michel, Steve, and Amit,” said Brian Mahony, CEO of event producer Trender Research™ Inc. ( “Not only did they earn kudos from a group of equally impressive industry executives, they did it as part of a fun and interactive game system that required them to think on their feet.”


The OTT Video Executive Summit is a one day event and is open to executive across the industry. The date and venue for the next Summit is currently being researched. For more information or media inquiries, contact Brian Mahony,

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