AOL: 5min Media acquisition helps build 'video ecosystem for the next decade'

AOL has confirmed it's acquired Israeli video syndication platform 5min Media which, it says, will allow AOL to expand its offering of contextually relevant video across its sites. Terms of the deal weren't disclosed, but All Things Digital's Peter Kafka posited that the transaction would be in the $50 million to $65 million range.

AOL CEO and Chairman Tim Armstrong said the acquisition is the latest of several moves the company has made recently to "better position AOL to capture the growing video opportunity on the Web."

"AOL is building a video ecosystem for the next decade," he said. "5min Media is the perfect complement to our powerful video capabilities--it provides a missing piece in the AOL value chain that completes our end-to-end video offering from content creation through syndication and distribution to the consumer experience and monetization."

The deal likely will increase AOL Network's appeal to advertisers and is expected to enhance the distribution and monetization of AOL-produced original video content throughout the Web.

"We've seen rapid and successful growth as an independent organization and becoming part of AOL is a natural next step," said 5min's CEO and co-founder Ran Harnevo. "We're confident that AOL's organizational horsepower, combined with the vast library, audience and syndication capabilities 5min Media offers, present compelling opportunities for AOL as well as the content creators we work with and the publishers we serve."

5min Media has a library of more than 200,000 categorized, tagged and rated videos from more than 1,000 media companies and professional independent video producers.

Founded in 2006 and headquartered in New York, 5min Media has raised some $13 million to date, including $7.5 million last year.  In August, it said, it saw 20 million unique viewers and more than 130 million video streams in the U.S.

In June, AOL acquired three-year-old StudioNow for $36.5 million, allowing AOL to integrate a fully functional video creation platform into its newly-launched content management system, StudioNow helps companies create, store, and manage content and syndicate it online at an affordable price. StudioNow works with a network of more than 3,000 freelance filmmakers, editors, animators, voice talent and writers/producers.

AOL already is using 5min Media's video content on its sites through a commercial agreement executed prior to the acquisition, AOL said. In addition to adding more video to its pages, Armstrong said the deal also will allow it to identify video content holes among our sites, tap our StudioNow capabilities to fill those needs and create a truly 'demand informed' video library."

For more:
- see this interview with AOL President of Media and Studios David Eun
- see this release

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