YipTV, the linear OTT streaming service founded by members of Vonage from its early days, is gaining another veteran from the VoIP provider as Louis Holder jumps aboard.
Similar to his role at Vonage, Holder will serve as YipTV's chief technology officer.
"Lou and I worked together during the early days at Vonage. What an amazing opportunity to work with him again in building another scalable, direct to consumer media-based business," said Michael Tribolet, CEO of YipTV. "Once again, we are working together to disrupt the consumer market. This time, we want to change the way people watch TV just like we changed the way consumers make phone calls worldwide by flattening price and broadening their options."
Holder was a co-founder of Vonage and worked with Tribolet on key facets of the VoIP provider's platform, helping to scale its capacity and bring in new customers. Holder also worked on product strategy at Vonage and co-founded Vonage Mobility, in addition to being responsible for that company's infrastructure, support services and web application development, among other things.
Between his Vonage days and joining YipTV, Holder was CEO of a consumer product company, Innovaci, which dealt with smart appliance technology for the health and wellness market segment. He also put in executive time at ooVoo, a video chat service, and OTT platform provider Narrowstep.
YipTV is continuing to chip out a place in the OTT sector, advancing its focus on Hispanic and multicultural audiences. The provider recently surpassed 100 licensed streaming channels, and has offered a free 17-channel streaming option for several months.
The service is operating in a segment that has seen somewhat mixed results. For example, while YouTube multichannel network MiTu had a breakout year in 2015 as a Latino-focused hub for original content, DirecTV's $7.99 monthly service Yaveo, which aimed at young U.S. Latinos, shut down in December. Other providers are competing in the multicultural space as well: Sling TV offers some of the same Spanish-language channels as YipTV. FilmOn offers a milieu of international channels, both linear and on demand. Comcast is actively segmenting subscribers in its cable footprint and targeting Hispanic households with "bicultural products and offers."
However, although YipTV clearly hopes to be a go-to video service for U.S. residents with ties to other countries, Tribolet told FierceOnlineVideo last fall that he doesn't see it replacing traditional broadcast or pay TV, but rather being used as an add-on lifestyle tier to viewers' existing video option. "We are really to [our audience] a first-tier platform because we have what they want to watch: their sports, their news, their telenovelas, their entertainment and travel channels. So we've got the lifestyle package for them that's more relevant to them."
- see the release
YipTV's Tribolet: We're a first-tier platform for our audience
FilmOn's David: Amazon, Google lobbying 'heavily' against regulating OTT providers as MVPDs
DirecTV to shutter Spanish-language streaming site Yaveo
Comcast: Better 'segmenting' of video consumers has returned the MSO to growth