Vimeo said it has acquired Livestream and has added a live-streaming feature to its platform dubbed Vimeo Live. The online video specialist will now allow all users to capture, edit, stream and archive live events and host and share video using a unified workflow.
As of now, the terms of the Livestream acquisition are not made public. However, Vimeo told TechCrunch that this is its biggest acquisition ever and that the deal is expected to conclude by the fourth quarter. Until then, Vimeo Live will operate as a standalone platform, and after the deal is closed, it will be integrated into the service’s main platform. Vimeo Live does not support mobile streaming for now, but the capability will be added once the deal is closed. Citi acted as exclusive financial advisor to Livestream for the transaction.
For the company, which was planning to enter the subscription video-on-demand space, this deal makes much more sense. Now it won’t have to face off with big names like Netflix, Amazon and Hulu, which are investing billions of dollars in new content, notes TechCrunch. Vimeo’s business model is based on selling tools and services to video creators. Now with Livestream’s technology, the video creators can also host live events.
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In a statement, Vimeo CEO Anjali Sud said, “Live streaming is the No. 1 request from our creator community this year, and we’re focused on bringing a new level of quality, convenience, and craft to this evolving medium.”
However, since the live-streaming feature will be a paid one and is “not a consumer-level product,” it won’t be of use to many Vimeo users, Sud told Variety. Vimeo’s new feature will cost $75 a month. Currently, about 830,000 users access Vimeo’s professional tools.
With the live-streaming feature, the IAC-owned company can now challenge bigger rivals like YouTube, which came up with mobile live-streaming in 2016, and also Facebook and Instagram. Livestream is used to power over 10 million events a year, and the platform is used by about 50 million viewers a month. Livestream’s client list includes some big names like Dow Jones, Spotify, Tough Mudder and the Philadelphia Eagles.
“Together, we will be able to go faster and further in making live video a truly ubiquitous form of communication for businesses and organizations,” said Livestream co-founder and CEO Mark Kornfilt.
Founded in 2007, Livestream has raised about $14.7 million in four funding rounds from a single investor, which is media conglomerate Gannett, according to Hypebot.
Vimeo says its new feature can stream OTT live broadcasts in 1080p and supports built-in cloud and adaptive streaming. Archives can also be replaced with 4K resolution files, notes Multichannel. The company is also planning to support live-streaming on social platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Twitch. It also wants to mark its presence on popular iOS and Android apps and other relevant platforms like Samsung connected TVs, Roku, and Amazon Fire TV.
At 10:42 a.m. Eastern, IAC shares were down 0.23% at $114.23. Year to date, the stock is up more than 77%, while in the last year, it is up almost 85%.