Vimeo acquires VHX
James R | On 03, May 2016
Vimeo has bought out VHX, as the site continues to build its range of services for creators.
While YouTube is duelling with Facebook, racing to introduce virtual reality, superior live-streaming and other features, Vimeo has remained focused on strengthening its reputation as the credible alternative. Vimeo Originals, such as High Maintenance, have positioned it as a provider of quality video, while its Vimeo On Demand platform (for selling through purchases, rentals and even subscription models) has placed an emphasis on giving filmmakers as much money as possible from their sales.
And so, as YouTube launched its own SVOD service, YouTube Red, Vimeo has been offering filmmakers the chance to create their own, smaller SVOD service. The acquisition of US-based site VHX boosts that side of its operations: VHX is a global platform for creators to release video, with a focus on supporting independent filmmakers.
Vimeo has praised the start-up’s “incredible OTT vide distribution platform”, which will help the company to sell white-label subscription channels around the world to creators, who can then produce apps and websites under their own brands. Indeed, earlier this year, VHX announced its new API that includes video content management (metadata and tagging capabilities) and encoding, a branded HTML5 video player, and apps for Roku, AppleTV, iOS, and Android platforms.
The deal for an undisclosed sum arrives as media companies increasingly choose to launch their own SVOD services, rather than sell content to Netflix or other subscription giants. In the last year, Disney has unveiled DisneyLife and YouTube MCN Fullscreen has created its own service.
“When it comes to longer form or premium productions, the economics of producing it on the free web just don’t work out,” Fullscreen founder George Strompolos told the BBC last month.
“Online video is expanding from a few, mainstream subscription services into a flourishing world of interest-based streaming channels, much like the evolution from broadcast to cable television,” Kerry Trainor, Vimeo CEO, tells The Verge. “As the video universe continues to unbundle, Vimeo offers the ideal home for the next generation of premium video channels serving passionate global audiences.”
VHX has reassured customers that there will be no disruptions to its platform.
“In the long-term, we get to improve VHX a lot faster: better streaming infrastructure, better apps, more marketing and business development firepower, and access to a huge, global audience,” say founders Jamie and Casey. “Over time we expect these improvements will translate into more competitive products, and new marketing and syndication opportunities for our sellers.”