YouTube Co-Founder Chad Hurley Invests in U.K. Online Video Network Firm Rightster
LONDON – U.K. online video network operator Rightster said Tuesday that it is raising money for two acquisitions and that YouTube co-founder Chad Hurley is investing in the company and joining its advisory committee.
The multi-channel network operator, which runs various video channels on YouTube, said it is buying rival Base79 for as much as $86 million (£50 million) and has also acquired video management and licensing firm Viral Spiral for up to $7 million (£4.1 million).
It said the deals would make it the fourth largest multi-channel network operator in North America and the largest outside the U.S.
"The acquisitions will support Rightster’s ability to achieve market leadership in online video, combining Rightster’s tech-supported 360 distribution and monetization expertise with Base79’s leading position as the largest YouTube partner outside North America and Viral Spiral’s expertise in social video management, licensing and brand engagement," the firm said.
The Walt Disney Co. recently acquired online network operator Maker Studios.
“Acquiring Base79 and Viral Spiral is transformational for Rightster,” said CEO Charlie Muirhead. “Importantly, this greater scale and expertise improves the service we will be able to offer creators and publishers, improving our ability to both grow audiences and increase monetization, and positions us as a global leader in the exploding online video market for brands and media agencies.”
Hurley is coming on board as part of a $72 million (£42 million) capital raise, in which the company will place shares to investors, including the former YouTube CEO.
Rightster said over the first six months of the year it averaged 371 million video views per month, up almost 50 percent from the second half of 2013.