Joost Taps Ooyala

Larry Kless · February 20, 2009 · Short URL:

Big Name Advisors From Joost and IBM Join Ooyala's Board of Advisors

Online video provider, Ooyala, confirmed it is providing video technology services for Joost. The Mountain View, CA based company deferred further details to an official announcement, scheduled for later this month. NewTeeVee's Liz Gaines, first reported the Joost-Ooyala relationship, after Ooyala issued a press release announcing the addition of two industry heavyweights Steven Abraham, Global Leader for IBM's Global Business Services in Media & Entertainment, and Mike Volpi, CEO of Joost to Ooyala's Board of Advisors.

Ooyala says the Joost partnership and the advisory board additions reflect the expansion of its customer base from small & medium content producers to large media entities. The nearly 2 year-old company already services social networking giant, Bebo, TvGuide, Electronic Arts, and IMG.

Abraham, a media and entertainment executive, and Volpi, a respected technologist bring Ooyala's Board of Advisors to a total of 6. They will provide direction and expertise for the company as it works to gain a foothold in the competitive online video platform industry. Ooyala said it has a working relationship with one of IBM's partner programs, but offered no other details.

Steven Abraham is IBM's global leader of media and entertainment industry and IBM's Global Business Services. He has worldwide responsibility for the group's global sales, revenue and profit. He was a key member of a group that collaborated with Xerox’s famed Palo Alto Research Center to pioneer products and services that helped form the foundation for today’s digital consumer services. About his new role on the advisory board Abraham says, "It is exciting to join a talented group of engineers and business managers who are passionate, committed, and focused on innovating and differentiating themselves as we embark on the next generation of online video. I look forward to being an integral part of Ooyala's success."

Mike Volpi joined Joost, the global web video service in 2007, as Chief Executive Officer. He's responsible for corporate strategy as well as for all business operations. Prior to Joost, Mike was a 13-year Cisco veteran and star player and was at one time considered to be the heir apparent to Cisco's current CEO, John Chambers. Most recently, he was Senior Vice President & General Manager for the Routing and Service Provider Technology Group, leading Cisco's overall strategy for the Service Provider market. He also served as Chief Strategy Officer, where he was responsible for Cisco's corporate strategy as well as business development, strategic alliances, advanced Internet projects, legal services, and government affairs. He had close ties with Joost's founders, Janus Friis and Niklas Zennstrom. Friis and Zennstrom also founded Skype, where Volpi has served on the board of directors.

“Although it is growing, online video is still a nascent industry which will rely on innovation, cooperation and collaboration in order to achieve its promise,” stated Mike Volpi. “I look forward to playing an instrumental role in Ooyala’s growth and development in this emerging market.”

In her news article, Gaines wrote, "The tie-up with Ooyala is a good move for Joost, whose technology has had hiccups throughout its many generations and revamps, from P2P app to plug-in to Flash video site. Joost content providers include Warner Bros. and investors CBS and Viacom and it also has extensive music video and anime collections... One advantage over competitors such as Hulu is that quite a bit of Joost’s content is available outside of the United States."

This is not only a good move for Joost, but a significant development for Ooyala. The company says the majority if its new customers are adopting its Video as a Service model (VaaS). According to Ooyala, such partnerships will help drive its business to profitability later this year.


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Ooyala is a video technology company that provides an integrated platform enabling the delivery, management, and monetization of high quality video content. Focused on innovation and scalability, Ooyala is committed to providing the most comprehensive video solutions to companies worldwide.Ooyala is headquartered in Mountain View, Ca with sales operations in New York, NY and London, UK. 

"Ooyala" means cradle in Telugu, a Southern Indian language. We like the name because it demonstrates what we are doing -- cradling a new form of innovation.

Ooyala was founded in early 2007 by Sean Knapp, Belsasar Lepe and Bismarck Lepe - all former Google employees. While at Google, they worked on the development and launch of various monetization and content distribution products such as AdSense, AdWords and Google Web Search. After four years of engineering and product development at the biggest Internet company in the world, the three left Google to start Ooyala. Ooyala has raised over 10 million dollars in funding and has in excess of 5000 publishers using its syndication platform - Backlot. Ooyala's goal is to build a successful technology company that focuses on delivering the best video experience to video content providers, advertisers and most importantly consumers.



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