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“MEDIAWORKS” #3: WDVX

MediaWorks(EDITOR’S NOTE: The Knoxville Entrepreneur Center is hosting its second annual “MediaWorks Demo Day” on August 11 at the Square Room on Market Square. To register, click here. Ahead of that event, we are profiling the nine companies in the start-up accelerator. This is one of those profiles.)

WDVX is a well-known, Knoxville-based, community-supported radio station. David Drews is participating in the “MediaWorks” start-up accelerator program. We posed a set of questions. Here are his responses.

  • When did you first conceive the idea for your new start-up?  I formulated the idea over a six month period during 2014.
  • Describe the product or service you are offering? For WDVX – a community-supported radio station, I wanted to provide listeners with an interactive digital experience, so we are creating WDVmiX. This product is a web application that provides listeners with access to our archive of 6,000 hours of recorded live American and world roots music. WDVX fans will utilize this archive to create and share playlists with other fans and even make collaborative playlists with WDVX artists.
  • Why do you think the market is ready for this opportunity you are offering? Terrestrial radio is on the decline and digital technology has offered interactive opportunities for a variety of entertainment platform. These trends, coupled with the advent of Spotify, iTunes, Pandora and TuneIn, require us to become more relevant in the digital age.
  • What do you think are the two or three biggest challenges you face that “MediaWorks” will be able to help you overcome? Technological and legal assistance are our greatest needs and “MediaWorks” cadre of tech and legal volunteers should be able to help us in this regard. Also, helping us fine tune the concept will be crucial. We do not have much in the way of financial or human resources, so helping us get to an efficient and market testable product sooner rather than later will be huge help.
  • Finally, tell us a little about yourself such as hometown and education. I am a native of Queens, N.Y., grew up mostly in Denver, and finished high school in Knoxville, TN.  I have two undergraduate degrees from the University of Tennessee: Finance and English Literature.  I also have a masters in secondary education from the University of Tennessee.  I spent seven years in the banking industry; the final three years at a French bank in New York, and I’ve taught writing and media arts in a variety of settings and in Knoxville since 2005.

Tom Ballard

By Tom Ballard, Chief Alliance Officer,
Pershing Yoakley & Associates. P.C.

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