Music video site Vevo has launched into its first international market, announcing Monday it has expanded availability to U.K. viewers. For online video sites like Hulu, that jump has been seemingly impossible. So how did Vevo do it? By having all the rights it needed from the get-go.
According to a blog post from Vevo CEO Rio Caraeff, viewers from across the pond already had access to many of its videos through its partnership with YouTube. (s GOOG) Now, they will be able to get the full-on Vevo experience at vevo.co.uk, as well as on applications for the iPhone, iPad (s AAPL) and Android mobile devices. The site will also have U.K.-specific content, like local video premieres and performances.
Other U.S.-based online video firms have sought to take their services to the U.K., only to get hung-up on rights issues and the inability to roll out a localized sales force. Hulu famously tried for months to take its targeted ad technology and superior user experience to that market, but gave up after it was unable to secure content rights it needed to make a rollout worthwhile. And when Netflix (s NFLX) announced its first international market, it launched close to home, rolling out its streaming-only video service in Canada.
Vevo, on the other hand, has all the rights it needs to launch in new international markets, and has had them from the start. Unlike Hulu, which only has U.S. rights for its most popular videos, it was always Vevo’s intent to be on as many device platforms and in as many markets as possible. Of course, Vevo has some help, as it was founded and funded by the same record labels whose videos it shows.
So does that mean we can expect Vevo to launch in more international markets? A spokesperson declined to comment on further international launches, but according to a report in The Guardian last month, Vevo is planning to expand to the Middle East and North Africa in the next few months, due in part to co-ownership by the United Arab Emirates-based Abu Dhabi Media Company. That could be followed by rollouts in Europe, Brazil and Australia later this year.