AICP, AICE Announce Merger
December 19, 2017 by Screenmag
The two powerhouse creative trade associations of AICP and AICE will merge, Matt Miller, President & CEO of AICP, and Rachelle Madden, Executive Director of AICE, announced today.
The two organizations are merging, effective Jan. 1, 2018. The associations represent companies that produce and finish the majority of advertising and marketing content in the moving image. Post merger, AICP and AICE will function as a single association under the AICP brand, dedicated to promoting and advocating for independent production and post companies when it comes to producing brand communications for advertising agencies, advertisers, and media companies.
The merger comes after months of careful deliberations on the part of each association’s respective boards and final votes of approval by their memberships. Under the newly merged association’s structure, Madden will assume the title of VP, Post Production and Digital Production Affairs of AICP, and will report to Miller. Madden is tasked with taking the lead on AICP’s post production offerings, including position papers, best practices, roundtables, town halls, and other educational programs. She will also lead a post production council, which is being formed to advise the AICP National Board on post matters.
Former AICE members will be eligible to join the General Member Production companies of AICP, with access to all benefits starting in 2018. These include: participation in the Producers’ Health Benefits Plan (PHBP); the AICP Legal Initiative (which provides legal advice on contracts with agencies and advertisers); and access to position papers, guidelines, and other tools as they relate to business affairs and employment issues. Other member benefits include access to attend meetings, roundtables, town halls and seminars, as well as receive the AICP newsletter, member discounts on services, and a listing in the AICP membership directory on the AICP website. All AICP offerings – including its AICP Week Base Camp for thought leadership - will be reflect the expanded membership to include topics and issues pertaining to post production. Previously created AICE documents, position papers and forms will now live on aicp.com.
The move unites associations that have built strong reputations for advocacy among their members and the industry at large during their existences. AICP was founded in 1972 to protect the interests of independent commercial producers, crafting guidelines and best practice in an effort to help its members run their businesses more effectively; through its AICP Awards, the organization celebrates creativity and craft in marketing communications.
AICE was founded in 1998 when three independent groups representing editing companies in Chicago, Los Angeles and New York formed a national association to discuss issues and undertake initiatives affecting post-production on a broader scale. In addition to editing, the full range of post production disciplines, including color correction, visual effects, audio mixing and music and sound design are represented.
From AICP’s perspective, says Miller, merging the two organizations has benefits for members of both groups. “As we grow more closely allied, it makes more sense than ever for the organizations to have a unified voice in the industry,” he notes. He points out that there are numerous companies that are members of both organizations, reflecting the blurring of the lines between production and post that’s been occurring as media platforms, technologies and client needs have changed.
For Madden, AICE’s members will be joining an organization that provides them with a firm footing in terms of resources, programs, benefits and initiatives. “There are many reasons why we moved forward on this merger, and most of them involve amplifying the voice of the post production industry by combining our interests and advocacy with those of AICP members,” says Madden. “We now become part of a much larger group, which gives us a strength in numbers we didn’t have before while adding critical post production perspectives to key discussions about business practices and industry trends.”
“We’ve thought long and hard about how to advance our mission of support and advocacy for the post production industry, and believe this is the best way to achieve that goal,” says Craig Duncan, formerly President of AICE’s International Board and now an AICP National Board Member, and Managing Director of Cutters Studios. “It just feels like a natural evolution for our association.”
Adds Ralph Laucella, Chairman of AICP’s National Board and Founding Partner/Executive Producer at O Positive, “The differences between what production companies do and what post production companies do now seem less distinct than the similarities we share. Joining forces and moving forward together as we face a rapidly changing advertising landscape benefits all our members.”