DURING 2012, LEASING TO A VALUE OF $ 464,000, İHA BOUGHT 16 HD ENCODERS AND FACILITATED HD BROADCASTING TO TELEVISIONS FROM MULTIPLE LOCATIONS
İhlas News Agency (İHA), the first news agency in Turkey to broadcast video news, was founded in 1993. İHA, having adopted true and objective reporting as its principle, and continued organisation and technology investments since the date it was established, is now one of the most successful news agencies in Turkey.
İHA produces a daily average of 160 video news items and 850 printed and photo-news items with over 900 personnel working in cooperation in 140 domestic and international offices. İHA is a respectable Turkish news agency with 1600 subscribers in 2012, consisting of a number of newspapers, web sites, magazines and institutions, together with more than 100 television channels in Turkey and in various other countries. Besides being capable of transmitting video, images or news from almost every town and city in Turkey, in addition to 35 countries around the world, İHA transmits news to subscribers via satellite uplink and the internet.
In addition to 250 national and global footage transmission stations, İHA has 32 uplink stations abroad so that it can instantaneously transmit video via satellite to the whole world, by rapidly arriving at the sources of events.
İHA started opening foreign offices in 1996, and has since earned its place among the world’s prestigious news agencies, thanks to its news production on 5 continents, and to its satellite operations. In parallel with the improvement in its technological infrastructure, İHA has enhanced its diversity of service. It started providing news in Arabic and English in 1998. With changing global paradigms following the September 11 attacks, İHA has concentrated its activities in Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Russia, Greece, Kosovo, Israel, Palestine and the Central Asian Turkish Republics. Widening its operational field in recent years, İHA has established offices in Washington, Cairo, Khartoum, Athens, Islamabad and Tripoli, blazoning them with fully organized studios and uplink equipment, and has started to provide more effective and efficient news and broadcasting services all over the world.
İHA started to make a name for itself around the world during the first Gulf Crisis and the wars in Kosovo and Macedonia between 1998 and 2000. Transmitting news to many international media channels on the war in Afghanistan, which started at the end of 2001, the war in Iraq in 2003, the tsunami disaster in Indonesia, and the explosions in London and Egypt in 2005, İHA also continued live coverage and news services during the Lebanon War in 2006, with broadcasts from Lebanon, Syria, and Israel, three fronts of the war. In addition, the agency connected Khartoum to different parts of the world via a teleconference organized on behalf of the President of Sudan, and organized live press conferences in 8 countries on 4 continents. Again, during the terrorist attacks in Mumbai in 2008 and the Israeli attacks in Gaza named ‘Operation Cast Lead’ in 2009, İHA maintained its performance and became one of the very few organisations to broadcast from both inside Gaza, and from the Israeli and Egyptian sides of the border.
Having provided widespread broadcasting services to Turkish TV channels from the European Championships in 2008, İHA sent 6 uplinks and a team of 30 people to the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, and provided transmission and live broadcasting services to over 300 Turkish and international TV channels during the competition. Again in 2010, İHA followed the 2010 general elections in Sudan with five different live broadcast teams. The public uprisings that occurred during 2011 in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya were closely followed by İHA teams, and İHA supplied technical services to television channels from all over the world.
The system of digitally archiving footage was launched with original software developed by İHA’s own technical team long before the emergence of similar examples elsewhere in the world. More than 750,000 images have been indexed under this system. Likewise, a total of 3,000,000 news texts and 4,078,000 photographs are digitally stored and indexed. The development project of a software to enable access to these digitally archived treasures, and make them available for users, was initiated in 2012 and still continues. The news automation system, the software of which was developed by İHA, was put into use to enable direct entry of news into the system from any location with internet access. This innovation will exponentially expand the current news reporter and copy editor network and enable faster transmission of the news to the client.
During 2012, leasing to a value of $ 464,000, İHA bought 16 HD encoders and facilitated HD broadcasting to televisions from multiple locations. With the investments made since 2011, the high capacity memory units were put into use and a server virtualisation technology was launched. The 70 TB current storage capacity of the memory units was expanded by 30 TB with the new unit, to a capacity of 100 TB. An additional 60 TB storage capacity will be added to the system in 2013.
Furthermore, technical services were provided to television channels in many European capital cities, to cover the economic crisis suffered by a number of European countries. As a result of the major focus on Greece due to its excessive debt load, a studio with uplink facility was opened and rapidly activated in Athens. News about the economic crisis in Athens was broadcast, along with strikes and demonstrations.
The participation rates of İhlas Holding and İhlas Media Holding in İHA as of the end of 2012 are 24% and 75%, respectively.
İHA was granted the ‘Best Video Award’, the ‘Best Photograph’, and the ‘Best News Award’ by the Antalya, Aydın, Kayseri, Konya, and Çorum Journalists’ Associations, various Non-governmental Organisations and Local Administrations in 2012.
The Agency will expand the number of countries in which it operates by opening its Paris and Moscow studios in 2013. In addition to the ongoing HD transmission services, it is planned to initiate HD (High Definition) video service to national and global subscribers and clients.
At the same time, the Company is going to make a revised investment of approximately $ 1,300,000, and plans to purchase 5 shoulder cameras and 15 semi-professional handy-cams in the first phase, and then continue with live broadcasting vehicles and flyaway uplink systems.