The overall multi-platform video/media and multi-channel network space continues to be white hot, with accelerating M&A, strategic, and venture capital investments, and an ever-growing list of significant strategic partnerships. Tough to keep up with it all, but my team and I at Manatt Digital Media
follow the space very closely.
To help, here is a scorecard/“cheat sheet” of key representative (1) M&A, (2) strategic investments, (3) VC investments, and (4) strategic partnerships — all in reverse chronological order (most recent first, so that you can get a sense of the accelerating pace, even during the purportedly slow-moving dog days of summer):
I. MCN M&A
Disney acquired Maker Studios
in the mid-March 2014 mega $500-$950 million deal that fueled and accelerated all of this year’s MCN activity.
II. MCN Strategic Investment
As opposed to M&A, this category represents major media companies that have taken significant equity stakes in (but not outright acquisition of) leading MCNs:
III. MCN Venture Capital Investment
As opposed to the strategic corporate investments discussed above, here are key multi-platform video/MCN-related venture capital investments:
Leading sports-focused MCN The Whistle raised $10 million ($18 million to date) from SeventySix Capital and “name brand” long-time media execs Bob DuPuy, Garry Laybourne, Bob Pittman in mid-May 2014.
Tastemade earlier raised $10 million from Raine Venture Partners, Redpoint Ventures, Comcast Ventures in August 2013.
Fullscreen previously raised an undisclosed 8-figure sum from The Chernin Group, Comcast Ventures, and WPP in June 2013.
StyleHaul previously raised $17 million from Bertelsmann Digital Media Investments, RTL Group, RezVen Partners.
IV. MCN Strategic Partnerships
As opposed to outright M&A or investment, MCN growth also is fueled by strategic partnerships. Here are a representative few:
FC Barcelona will use Dailymotion’s video player on their site and Dailymotion will launch FC Barcelona channel, dedicated to soccer (announced early August 2014).
Fox Sports Digital is partnering with Sporting News Media to share and swap libraries of editorial and video content (announced late July 2014).
Conde Naste launches pioneering brand-focused The Scene with content partners including AOL, ABC News, Forbes, BuzzFeed, Vox Media (announced mid-July 2014).
The Whistle announces continuous string of mega-content co-creation, co-distribution, and co-promotion deals with the NFL, MLB, NASCAR, PGA Tour, AVP Beach Volleyball, Harlem Globetrotters (ongoing throughout 2014).
Maybelline announced a deal with StyleHaul in June 2014 for branded content in its YouTube channels (with StyleHaul videos also appearing in Maybelline’s content hub and on TV).
Leading media company Lionsgate and Freddie Wong’s RocketJump Studios agree to a multi-year film, TV and digital content alliance (announced April 2014).
Mediakraft and British Pathe announce a major content deal in April 2014 to bring 85,000 videos to YouTube from their historical film archives of to YouTube (announced April 2014).
Tags: at&t, AwesomenessTV, Base79, Big Frame, Collective Digital Studio, disney, Dreamworks Animation, fullscreen, guest column, maker studios, MCN, Mediakraft Networks, otter media, peter csathy, Relativity Media, Rightster, StyleHaul, voices, youtube, YouTube Creators
Note: These certainly are key strategic MCN/multi-platform video “moves” — but certainly not all of them.And, the action is still in its early innings…
This article was republished with the author’s permission. Check out more of Peter Csathy’s thoughts on the digital media space at the Digital Media Update.