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Summary:

Limelight Networks today announced it’s acquired dynamic video and audio ad insertion startup Kiptronic. Terms of the deal weren’t disclosed. This is the CDN’s first-ever acquisition, and effectively brings it into the mobile content distribution and content monetization businesses. An acquisition, in this economic climate?! Why […]

Limelight Networks today announced it’s acquired dynamic video and audio ad insertion startup Kiptronic. Terms of the deal weren’t disclosed. This is the CDN’s first-ever acquisition, and effectively brings it into the mobile content distribution and content monetization businesses.

An acquisition, in this economic climate?! Why now? “This is the time all our customers starting to make decisions about mobility,” explained Paul Alfieri, Limelight’s senior director of corporate communications.

Kiptronic, which had raised $9 million in funding, only recently got into mobile video publishing, launching earlier this month with its first customer, NBC. Kiptronic allows NBC to publish a single universal URL that adapts videos to whatever device they’re trying to be accessed on. (And ads are served dynamically using Kiptronic’s integration with DART.)

“The name of the game is changed from just having massive scalability to adding device optimization,” said Alfieri. He added Limelight would build Kiptronic’s “device detection intelligence” into its network.

As for monetization of media as it travels across the web and to different devices both online and offline — Kiptronic’s specialty — Alfieri admitted that it’s an entirely different business than being a CDN. He said Kiptronic will continue to work with other CDNs and customers who use other CDNs. “From the Limelight side, that’s a way for us to have a relationship with a large publisher even if they don’t select us for bit delivery.” CDN analyst Dan Rayburn says to expect more such “value-add” acquisitions from CDNs trying to diversify their revenues.

Kiptronic’s entire 15-employee team, including CEO Bill Loewenthal and founder and CTO Jonathan Cobb, will join Limelight and will remain at their own office in San Francisco at least through the end of the year. In addition to NBC, Kiptronic customers include NPR, FOX, The Guardian, Conde Nast and The Economist.

On a personal note, I remember way back in January 2007, just after we’d started this site, I wrote about (as an exclusive, I think) Kiptronic’s Series A funding, $4 million from Blueprint Ventures and Prism VentureWorks. The first comment was “Is it really this easy to get venture capital or is this just another bubble?” and for some reason that particular hater got to me. While terms of the deal weren’t announced, it’s cool to see that Kiptronic did end up doing something worth buying.

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  1. Agreed, Liz. Kiptronic has a cool technology. Jonathan Cobb did a good job turning concept into useful technology.

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  2. [...] year Akamai also bought an ad startup — aCerno, for behavioral advertising. Kiptronic handles targeting, too, but its focus is dynamically delivered ads to media in any environment — on a mobile [...]

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  3. [...] figure. Last year Akamai also bought an ad startup — aCerno, for behavioral advertising. Kiptronic handles targeting, too, but its focus is dynamically delivered ads to media in any environment — on a mobile [...]

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  4. [...] year Akamai also bought an ad startup — aCerno, for behavioral advertising. Kiptronic handles targeting, too, but its focus is dynamically delivered ads to media in any environment — on a mobile [...]

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  5. It’s good to see that Kiptronic has both survived and succeeded. Cobb always seemed like one of the more low-key, smarter guys on the block, not rushed and not hype-driven. If I recollect, they came onto the early video podcast scene (seems like ages ago) then evolved with ad-serving product. Limelight’s a nice fit, let’s hope it’s a great marriage.

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    1. @zane – That’s right. They just had the foresight not to start their company name with “pod” and later change it, like everyone else did.

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  6. [...] for downloaded media. The move came at nearly exactly the same time as competitor Kiptronic was bought by Limelight Networks last Wednesday and [...]

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  7. [...] for portable media as well. (This is something that Volo competitor Kiptronic, which just got bought by Limelight Networks, already had.) And secondly, publisher access to iTunes data within Google Analytics via a plug-in [...]

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  8. [...] in 2009 aimed at expanding beyond the commodity CDN market into more high-value services. It bought Kiptronic earlier this year to expand more deeply into mobile content [...]

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  9. [...] video-capable mobile device, including the iPad. The service, which Limelight acquired through its purchase of mobile video firm Kiptronic last May, also uses Apple’s adaptive-bit rate streaming protocol for ad insertion and [...]

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  10. [...] Velocitude buy is similar to rival Limelight Networks’ acquisition of mobile services firm Kiptronic last year. Kiptronic also provides on-the-fly mobile page transformation, enabling [...]

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