Utopic hybrid digital shop bows

The partners of Chicago’s first hybrid digital media company, Utopic, officially opening for business Jan. 4 in River West, are perched on the crest of the first major transformation of the visual media industry in a decade.

“There’s a fantastic growth opportunity for hybrid models on the vendor side that leverage assets across different media,” notes Michael Antonucci, VP/executive producer.

“Clients need suppliers with that capability.”

Antonucci is a co-founder with former Optimus creative editors, Jan Maitland and Tim Kloehn, and a merger of Shannon Kemp and Tony Passero’s 10-year old digital TribeAgency.

Utopic’s nine staffers are working out of 4,500-sq. ft. of temporary space, on the fourth floor at 420 N. Wabash.

Next week, the build-out starts on their 9,500-sq. ft., permanent facilities, occupying three-quarters of the sixth floor of the building, scheduled to be completed April. 1.

Utopic president Maitland estimates a total investment of approximately $1 million, divided between remodeling and equipping the facility with editing systems, web servers, design workstations and a music studio.