Online video platform Ooyala has raised a further $35 million in funding to scale its international operations. Telstra, the largest telecommunications company in Australia, led the investment. Telstra will also become a customer and reseller of Ooyala services.
Based in Mountain View, California, where it was founded in 2007 by former Google employees, Ooyala has now raised a total of almost $80 million in funding.
The Telstra Applications and Ventures Group led the latest investment round, together with prior venture capital investors.
Telstra has a media division responsible for delivering its own IPTV and online media services and has a 50% stake in the Foxtel pay-television operation.
Current Telstra service offerings will be enhanced through the integration of online video and analytics from Ooyala, becoming its largest customer to date.
Ooyala will use the investment to add scale to its operations outside the United States, building on its existing footprint in Europe, Asia, Australia and Latin America.
Ooyala has differentiated its services through the provision of detailed analytics. Its latest development, Ooyala Now, offers real time viewer metrics, presented in a dashboard that updates second-by-second.
“TV is changing. More and more premium content is being delivered over IP rather than via traditional distribution channels,” said Jay Fulcher, the chief executive officer of Ooyala. “Large service providers like Telstra are standardising on the technology platforms that will drive the next generation of personalised, multiscreen services.”
“Telstra is deploying our technology to deliver rich new consumer services across all connected devices and is committed to helping other content providers make profitable transitions from traditional video to IP distribution using Ooyala technology.” He said the lines between online video and television continue to blur and will eventually fade away.
Rick Ellis was appointed as group managing director for Telstra Media in early 2012, having previously been chief executive of TVNZ, the leading broadcaster in New Zealand.
Gary Traver, the director of Telstra Media, who was previously chief operating officer at Comcast Media Center, becomes a member of Ooyala’s board of advisors.
“The industry is now standardizing around technology stacks that enable the future of IP-based distribution,” he said. “With Ooyala’s robustness and focus on personalization and profitability, it is becoming the platform on which the next generation of large-scale deployments are built.”
Telstra was an early adopter of video services from thePlatform, which in 2006 became an independent subsidiary of Comcast, which has since merged with NBC Universal. Telstra announced a multi-year extension of its previous agreement with thePlatform in February 2011.
Ooyala has established itself as a player in the crowded online video platform space, where it competes with companies like thePlatform, Brightcove, KIT Digital and many others.