Brandon Wirtz

Brandon Wirtz

Founder and CEO: BlackWaterOps

Kirkland, Washington (Greater Seattle Area)
Online Media

As a LinkedIn member, you'll join 300 million other professionals who are sharing connections, ideas, and opportunities.

  • See who you and Brandon Wirtz know in common
  • Get introduced to Brandon Wirtz
  • Contact Brandon Wirtz directly

View Brandon's full profile

Brandon Wirtz's Overview

  • CTO and Co-Founder at Blackwater Ops
  • Standards Body Voting Member at SMPTE
  • Evangelist at Microsoft MVP
  • CTO at Stremor
  • Director of Content Innovation and Technology at ZillionTV
  • Lead For Media Encoding Resource Lab for IPTV Networks (Merlin) at Microsoft
  • Evangelist at WINNOV
  • Lead Compressionist at Akimbo
  • Voting Member at SMTPE
  • Instructor at Stone Hebrew Academy
  • IT Manager at Comprehensive Data Services
  • Program Director, Team Building Instructor, Ropes and Tower Maintenance and Instruction at Kimball Camp YMCA

500+ connections


Brandon Wirtz's Experience

CTO and Co-Founder

Blackwater Ops

January 2009Present (5 years 10 months)

Created the first viral marketing analytics and tracking solution, which allowed DMC.CO.UK to track online viral marketing videos for clients such as Electronic Arts and Virgin Mobile. Ushering in the legitimacy of social media marketing on the web. Created multiple websites with Alxea rank of top 10k or better. Increased traffic to both client and own sites through CPA, CPC, PPC, and CPM ads on AdWords, AdBrite, Chitika, StumbleUpon, PubCenter and other ad networks. Created several viral “stories” which built buzz and personal brand. (See attached case studies). Developed and deployed custom analytics packages to supplement analytics from Google and others. Managed more than 1 billion pages of content.
Architected, developed, and deployed several cloud based applications using Google App Engine, and Amazon S3. Developed and released CDN In A Box, a page level caching website accelerator and CDN Solution written in Python and running on Google App Engine. Reduced the hosting costs of by $3,500 per month. Survived over 100k Survivor fans visiting in 45 minutes using only $60 in hosting costs, and serving 98% of requests in under 1 second.
Developed 2D video to 3D stereoscopic video software algorithm using a proprietary psycho-visual model based on years of experience in video processing and compression written in AVISynth (a C like video optimized programming language). upconverted several indie films for film festivals and demos. Licensed portions of the technology to LG Electronics for inclusion in their 3D Televisions.
Worked as an outsourced resource for venture capital firms to assess the viability of potential and existing investments. Found and recruited specialized employees for positions requiring deep knowledge in specific areas for short periods of time, and reduced redundant staff in companies that were running out of burn, or needed to reduce costs prior to shopping for an acquisition.

Standards Body Voting Member


Nonprofit; 11-50 employees; Entertainment industry

March 2005Present (9 years 8 months)

Commitee member for creation of the specifications for VC-1 and H.264 video compression standards.


Microsoft MVP

Public Company; 10,001+ employees; MSFT; Computer Software industry

2003Present (11 years)

Chief Operations Officer

Griffin Digital Solutions

Privately Held; 51-200 employees; Investment Management industry

April 2000Present (14 years 7 months)

I am the technology leader for Griffin Digital Solutions. I set the focus and direction the company will take, and the means it will use to get there.



Privately Held; 1-10 employees; Internet industry

20122012 (less than a year)

Director of Content Innovation and Technology


Privately Held; 51-200 employees; Entertainment industry

20082008 (less than a year)

Lead For Media Encoding Resource Lab for IPTV Networks (Merlin)


Public Company; 10,001+ employees; MSFT; Computer Software industry

June 2005October 2007 (2 years 5 months) Mountain View, CA

Worked with content providers (HBO, Starz, TNN, MTV) to move their content from traditional cable and satellite workflows to VC1 and H.264 TS workflows. Lead / Founder of Microsoft’s Best Practices Lab for IPTV (later MediaRoom), the Media Encoding Resource Lab For IPTV Networks (Merlin) a testing environment for various encoding hardware and software, a resource for creating content, and a group of subject matter experts for various video and encoding technologies (VC-1, Mpeg2, h.264, Transport Streams). Responsible for engineering workflows for creating various types of content. This includes content with 608, and 708 Closed captioning, CGMA, WSS, and subtitles. Creation of test content for given scenarios such as pixel aspect ratio, color levels, interlacing, cadence, audio video sync, Macrovision at all levels and other bug related tests. Responsible for making encoding profile recommendations and creating test matrices for each encoding solution. technical writer for the VOD encoding guide for IPTV, outlining workflows and best practices for industry tools including Inlet Fathom, Moonlight Encoder, Final Cut Pro, Avid, Pinnacle, PixelTools, MainConcept, Sony Vega, Digital Rapids, Osprey, and 40+ other common tools in the industry. Architected video quality metrics (VQM) for ensuring that quality of the output from the set top box stayed the same or improved with each new build. Acted as project manager for short interrupt driven special projects from executives, and trade shows. Participated in the “Carbon” project to port IPTV to Xbox 360. Assisted with “Pegasus” which became Xbox Live Video Market Place.



Privately Held; 11-50 employees; Computer Hardware industry

April 2005June 2005 (3 months)

Lead Compressionist


Privately Held; 11-50 employees; Computer Software industry

August 2004March 2005 (8 months)

Responsible for developing work flow for Digital Acquisition and compression of Video, for delivery over IP to Akimbo's set top box.

Voting Member


20052005 (less than a year)


Stone Hebrew Academy

20002002 (2 years)

Privately Held; 1-10 employees; Computer Networking industry

May 1993February 2000 (6 years 10 months)

I Served as an outsource IT Consultant to 32 organizations serving over several thousand seats. This position was similar to being the CTO for a Forturne 1000 company, accept that my company was made up of lots of mid sized companies.

Program Director, Team Building Instructor, Ropes and Tower Maintenance and Instruction

Kimball Camp YMCA

August 1997May 1999 (1 year 10 months)

I was Program Director for Summer Camp, and lead teambuilding and leadership training. I also did all the maintenance on the High Ropes, Low Ropes, and Climbing tower.

A high stress job is not managing a team of silicon valley geeks, it is rescuing a camper who passed out 40 feet in the air because they had a panic attack going through the ropes course.

Managing geeks is easy compared to managing a staff that ranges in age from 14 to 45.

I am better stronger and faster for having worked as a Camp Director.

Brandon Wirtz's Summary

I am currently working as an SEO/SEM/Online Marketing consultant.

I was formerly compressionist and technical lead for Microsoft TV's Merlin Lab. A group dedicated to best practices and research in content processing for IPTV. I worked with HD content for both Live and On-Demand in VC-1, H.264, and Mpeg2.

I was Chief Operations Officer for Griffin Digital Solutions. My primary function was as an outsourced consultant to companies working with Streaming Media, Distance Learning, Deployment, and Security.

I have built a network of clients and developed custom solutions based around the Windows Media Platform through London based Digital Media Communications LTD . Working with DMC, I created solutions for tracking the viewership of Viral Marketing clips that were used by companies including Virgin, Mazda, Microsoft Xbox, Electronic Arts, MTV and numerous others In the US and UK.

When Windows 2003 Server was released to beta I saw opportunity to use its improved streaming server as a platform for paid content. Prior to the ship date of Windows 2003 Server I developed QANTA a complete authentication and metering platform for monetizing Windows Media content. QANTA used the robust WMS API to create a set of server plug-ins that allow users and passwords to be stored in a SQL Database and Quota to be applied to those users. Combined with the fast start, and stream seek features built in to Windows Media Server 9 it allows for a better than “on demand” pay per view system for online content.


SEO, SEM, Affiliate Marketing, Online Marketing, Ad Optimization, Streaming Media, Windows Media, Distance Learning, Team Building, High Ropes, Low Ropes, Tower, Camping, Counseling, Management Training, Evangelist, Community Builder, IT management, Business Development, Streaming Media, Not-for-profit management, Marketing, Project Management, Digital Rights Management, Security, Distance Learning, Office Collaboration, Infrastructure, Roll outs / Deployment, IPTV, TV2, Microsoft, IPTVe

Brandon Wirtz's Skills & Expertise

  1. SEO
  2. Marketing
  3. Project Management
  4. Technology
  5. Language Technology
  6. Live Video Streaming
  7. Strategy
  8. IPTV
  9. Online Advertising
  10. Streaming Media
  11. VOD
  12. Video
  13. Business Development
  14. Online Marketing
  15. Business Intelligence
  16. Team Building
  17. Mobile Devices
  18. Digital Media
  19. Social Networking
  20. Mobile Applications
  21. Strategic Partnerships
  22. Product Marketing
  23. New Media
  24. Social Media Marketing
  25. Content Strategy
  26. Analytics
  27. Web Video
  28. Enterprise Software
  29. Start-ups

View All (29) Skills View Fewer Skills

Brandon Wirtz's Education

Fremont High School


Reading High School



Contact Brandon for:

  • career opportunities
  • consulting offers
  • new ventures
  • expertise requests
  • business deals
  • reference requests
  • getting back in touch

View Brandon Wirtz’s full profile to...

  • See who you and Brandon Wirtz know in common
  • Get introduced to Brandon Wirtz
  • Contact Brandon Wirtz directly

View Brandon's full profile

Not the Brandon Wirtz you were looking for? View more »