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Summary:

Akimbo, an early entrant in the Internet Video game has shuttered its doors, as first indicated by VentureBeat and confirmed by NewTeeVee. Peter Chantel, CFO of the company told NewTeeVee that the nine-year-old company has held onto a skeleton staff that will find a buyer for […]

Akimbo, an early entrant in the Internet Video game has shuttered its doors, as first indicated by VentureBeat and confirmed by NewTeeVee. Peter Chantel, CFO of the company told NewTeeVee that the nine-year-old company has held onto a skeleton staff that will find a buyer for the company. Akimbo raised over $56 million from big name VCs including Keiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and Draper Fisher Jurvetson. AT&T and Cisco were backers as well.

The company had initially started out offering niche content via progressive downloads using a special set-top box. The box didn’t fly, so company changed tactics, proving my point that standalone set-top boxes are difficult to pull off. Akimbo changed its chief executive, replacing founder Josh Goldman with Thomas Frank. The company recently raised another $4 million as it tried to become a content delivery service sans set-top box. That didn’t work either.

I am surprised that a company that laid off a few people recently and raised $4 million in February went out of business that fast. I made a few calls and gathered that some disagreements arose between the board and the CEO, Frank. There is more than what meets the eye. This one is dot-gone but it leaves behind an important message: anyone with set-top box dreams should be worried.

  1. lastmilemktg Friday, May 23, 2008

    Someone should open a Set Top Box Museum in Silicon Valley. Would need to be a very large building.

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  2. [...] space? The company has seen management issues (the former CEO left, and disagreements apparently arose after his replacement with Thomas Frank). But that still doesn’t explain why the company [...]

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  3. [...] Akimboのパーソナリティがひとつや二つじゃないことを考えると、トラブっても驚くことではないが、新業界参入たった3ヶ月で撤退を決めた理由は何なのか? 実は経営問題が起こっていたのだ(社内紛争は元CEOが辞め、後任のThomas Frankと交代したのを境に起こった)。もっとも、それでもまだ同社がホワイトレーベルの業界にこんな中途半端な努力しか払わない理由の説明にはならないだろう。 [...]

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  4. [...] content delivery were simply too skewed to wrestle into profitability. Any bets on who’s next?[Via GigaOM]Read | Permalink | Email [...]

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  5. “Someone should open a Set Top Box Museum in Silicon Valley. Would need to be a very large building.”

    Java: Can I come too?

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  6. [...] Om you and I aggree most the time, but you are wrong. Set Top Box dreams are not dead.  Silicon Valley Just doesn't know how to speak Content. [...]

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  7. Akimbo never had depth in any niche, and they didn’t speak Hollywood. This is the problem with the over 30 STB companies I have worked with.

    Om if you or one of your staff want to talk with an “STB” company that isn’t going to fail, drop me a line, I’d be happy to arrange a demo of the guys I’m betting on.

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  8. It was originally called nextv, then akimbo, what happened is basically that flash video codec with reasonable quality video became predominant, so no need for STBs when you can just go to a site. The paradigm shifted taking the market with it. It happens.

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  9. This closure has nothing to do with saturated VOD market.

    This closure has nothing to do with the sky falling.

    The MS Media center deal was the dumbest ‘distractor’ I’ve ever personally witnessed.

    http://deancollinsblog.blogspot.com/2008/05/ding-dong-akimbos-dead.html

    I’m sure one day someones going to write a book about how something so far ahead of it’s time (but not too far – so thats not the reason), went so very very wrong.

    Cheers,
    Dean Collins
    http://www.Cognation.net

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  10. [...] space? The company has seen management issues (the former CEO left, and disagreements apparently arose after his replacement with Thomas Frank). But that still doesn’t explain why the company [...]

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