×

IBM Acquires Ustream for Up to $150 Million, Powering Into Live-Streaming Video

Ustream customers include Facebook, HBO, Discovery Channel and Sony

IBM has acquired Ustream, a provider of live and on-demand video-streaming services, expanding Big Blue’s reach in delivering and managing video for media companies and enterprises.

The deal is worth about $150 million, including potential future payments if Ustream hits performance targets, according to a source familiar with the deal. IBM is paying $130 million for Ustream excluding earn-out provisions, Fortune and the Wall Street Journal reported. (IBM said terms of the deal are not being disclosed.)

Ustream, founded in 2007, had raised about $60 million from investors including DCM Ventures and SoftBank Capital. Customers include Facebook, HBO, Nike, Discovery Channel, Cisco, Sony, Intuit, NASA, Mazda and Samsung. The company claims it powers 2 million broadcast streams per month, 80 million viewers per month, ranging from corporate keynotes to live music concerts.

With the deal, IBM has formed the Cloud Video Services unit, which combines assets from Ustream and the recent acquisition of video-on-demand management firm Clearleap. The unit also will create solutions integrating technologies from other IBM investments, including Aspera and Cleversafe. IBM Cloud Video Services will be led by GM Braxton Jarratt, former CEO of Clearleap.

“Video has become a first-class data type in business that requires accelerated performance and powerful analytics that allows clients to extract meaningful insights,” said Robert LeBlanc, senior VP of IBM Cloud. “Aligning our expansive video and cloud innovations into an integrated unit will create opportunities for clients to take advantage of this medium in the most strategic way possible.”

Big Blue sees Ustream bulking up its cloud-based services biz. In 2015, IBM Cloud revenue totaled $10.2 billion, up 57% year-to-year. The tech company estimates that cloud-based video will represent a $105 billion market opportunity by 2019.

Ustream is based in San Francisco, with a development office in Budapest, Hungary, and data centers in San Jose, Calif., Amsterdam and Tokyo. IBM said it will integrate Ustream’s development platform into Bluemix, its open cloud development platform.

Separately, last October IBM acquired the Weather Company’s business-to-business properties, with the Weather Channel remaining a separate entity.

More Digital

  • GoNoodle I Used a Comma

    Can GoNoodle Climb to the Kid-Media Big Leagues?

    If you’re a parent of grade-school kids in America, the odds are good your tykes know about GoNoodle’s upbeat music and exercise videos, designed to get them up on their feet and moving around. But GoNoodle doesn’t have the same brand recognition as, say, Disney or Nickelodeon — and KC Estenson wants to change that. [...]

  • Friends TV Series

    'Friends' DVD, Digital Sales Soar as It Takes a Break From Streaming

    They’re on a streaming break — but “Friends” will still be there for you. WarnerMedia’s home entertainment division is aiming to capitalize on the brief disappearance of the hit sitcom from streaming video on demand, as fans look for other ways to get their “Friends” fix. Repeats of the wildly popular laffer, which ran for [...]

  • RuPaul

    RuPaul Launches Self-Help Internet Class Teaching You How to 'Work the Runway of Life'

    Legendary drag performer and TV star RuPaul is leading a self-help online course to teach you how to find your identity — and live your best life. The 16-lesson course, offered through online-education platform MasterClass, costs $90 for unlimited access. In RuPaul’s class on “self-expression and authenticity,” he shares experiences from his journey to self-love [...]

  • Spotify and Resident Advisor Announce Ticketing

    Spotify Unveils Ticketing Partnership With Dance Music Platform Resident Advisor

    Spotify today announced a ticketing partnership with influential dance-music website Resident Advisor with the goal of “supporting music communities around the world by increasing attendance to thousands of local venues and parties.” The program will connect Spotify users to events by artists via localized event listings promoted within the application. The program is similar to [...]

  • charlie hunnam TIFF 2019 Kelly Gang

    Apple TV’s 'Shantaram' Halts Production Amid Search for New Showrunner, Weather Problems

    Production of Apple TV Plus’ Charlie Hunnam-starring “Shantaram” has been halted in Australia due to a writing backlog. Only two of 10 episodes shot so far, Variety has confirmed. Though all episodes had been outlined in the writers’ room, it is understood that showrunner and high-profile screenwriter Eric Warren Singer (“Top Gun: Maverick,” “American Hustle”) [...]

  • Pictured: Patrick Stewart as Jean-Luc Picard

    CBS All Access, Showtime to Reach 16 Million Streaming Subscribers By Year's End

    CBS All Access and Showtime are on track to garner a combined 16 million subscribers by year’s end, ViacomCBS CEO Bob Bakish told investors Thursday. ViacomCBS’ subscription-streaming offerings ended 2019 with 11 million subscribers in total, a 50% gain over 2018. CBS Corp. previously forecast the two streaming services would reach 25 million subscribers by [...]

  • delete Me

    Viaplay Orders Young Adult Series 'Delete Me' From Norway (EXCLUSIVE)

    Viaplay, Scandinavia’s leading streaming service, has ordered “Delete Me,” a Norwegian form series skewing young adults and headlined by cast of up-and-comers. Written and directed by Marie Kristiansen (“Young and Promising”), the series uses innovative narrative techniques to explore vital contemporary topics such as cyber-bullying, hacking and exclusion. Each episode of 20 minutes is told [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content