Telstra hangs up on Ooyala, sells back to owner

17 October 2018

Telstra has sold video-streaming platform Ooyala which it acquired for more than $500 million in 2012 and subsequently wrote down to a value of zero in February this year.

Telstra bought the platform in two stages from 2012 to 2014 in an attempt to transform itself from a telco to a global tech company.

Ooyala, which is a video platform that helps broadcasters, publishers, studios and production companies make more money with video, was headed up by general manager Steve Davis until April when Patricio Cummins replaced him.

Last year Davis told AdNews, in an Industry Profile, that the elephant in the room was indeed market consolidation.

“The consolidation in the industry is real and there will only be a few winners,” Davis said.

Following the sale of the platform back to Ooyala management, the Silicon Valley startup says it will continue to build on the success of Ooyala with Telstra remaining a “valued” partner and customer.

“With this transaction we’re ushering in an exciting new chapter for our company, positioning ourselves to invest even more aggressively in our client solutions,” CEO Jonathan Huberman says.

“We’re now much better equipped to more nimbly drive Ooyala’s growth – innovating our own technologies as well as acquiring others that deliver the best customer satisfaction. Our flagship product, the Ooyala Flex Media Platform, is on track to solidify a position as the best-in-class video streaming and media logistics solution.”

Ooyala will continue to be led by the current management team.

“As part of our focus on portfolio management we have already announced the restructure of Telstra Ventures and last week we completed the exit of our US-based intelligent video business Ooyala,” Telstra CEO Andy Penn said about the sale.

“This was completed via a management buyout with upside sharing arrangements for Telstra if the business achieves profitable growth and is sold in the future.”

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