Joost, just a few months after having its assets purchased by Adconion Media Group, has found new life as a video ad network. With the just-launched Joost Video Network, the online video portal Joost.com will continue to operate, serving up in-banner and in-stream ads to targeted audiences watching videos on the site. But in addition to running ads through the video portal, the new Joost network will also be used to serve ads to more than 2,000 of Adconion’s publishing partners.
Adconion’s business is all about aggregating and guaranteeing large audiences for branded advertisements, and adding Joost gives it a pretty complete offering, one that ranges from creation to distribution of those ads on a massive scale. Adconion has a wholly owned production group called RedLever to create branded web content, and now with Joost.com it has a place to serve those videos. And Joost’s technology and syndication partnerships will help to distribute those messages out to other video sites.
Joost launched in 2007 with more than $45 million in funding from investors such as Sequoia Capital, Index Ventures, Viacom (s VIA), CBS (s CBS) and Chinese tycoon Li Ka-shing, but wasn’t able to make any money as an online video aggregator. Then it set its sights on providing video management and distribution services, but that didn’t pan out either. After running out of options, it sold to Adconion last November.
Joost wasn’t the only video aggregator to face tough times in recent months. Veoh, which had raised more than $70 million from investors like Adobe (s ADBE), Goldman Sachs (s GS), Intel (s INTC), Spark Capital, Time Warner (s TWX) and Michael Eisner’s Tornante Company, recently filed for bankruptcy after failing to make a business out of its video destination site. And Babelgum made numerous cost-cutting moves late last year, including down some of its offices in Europe to streamline operations.
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