TokBox Raises $12M, Launches OpenTok Video Chat


Video chat startup TokBox has raised $12 million in a new funding round led by DAG Ventures, and is launching a new service called OpenTok. The new video chat offering, which is built on a set of JavaScript APIs, will allow publishers to embed video chat services in their websites.

The OpenTok platform builds on TokBox’s existing consumer video chat service, and extends it to enable web publishers to create and control video chat services within their websites. With the OpenTok offering, up to 20 people can join a video chat on a web page. The APIs also allow publishers to control the size, layout, positioning and interaction between users, including setting rules for who can join and who can watch the video chat services.

By doing so, TokBox believes it can tap a number of different segments that can benefit from video conferencing applications built into websites, such as messaging, online dating, gaming, e-learning and workforce collaboration. It’s already working with partners in many of these verticals, including IM aggregator eBuddy, speed dating site WinkVid, education service provider TutorTrove, live poker portal PokerView, and project management firm Assembla.

TokBox has had a bit of a troubled past, with multiple CEO changes and a round of restructuring about 18 months ago. While the team cut six employees last year, it’s growing again, with 21 employees now and five open positions. It’s now placing its bets on OpenTok, which should enable it to make some additional revenue by charging companies that use the platform for additional features or controls.

TokBox’s new Series C financing round was led by DAG Ventures, and includes existing investors Bain Capital and Sequoia Capital. Altogether, TokBox has raised $26.4 million.

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