In a move that is says will accelerate its evolution to a device and UI independent cloud-based Software-as-a-Service operation, yielding a significant expansion in market opportunity, advanced television technology specialist TiVo is to acquire cloud-based content discovery and recommendation service Digitalsmiths for $135 million.
Digitalsmiths offers personalised video search, recommendations and browsing, social trending, and mood-based discovery which can be used to connect consumers instantly to the most relevant movies, TV shows and live events available, at any time, on any screen including set-top boxes, tablets, smart phones, computers and gaming consoles. Digitalsmiths currently works with 46 blue‐chip US and international Service Providers including seven of the top 10 pay-TV operators in the United States, Content Providers and Consumer Electronic Manufacturers.
“The Digitalsmiths acquisition opens new opportunities to commercialise and deploy TiVo’s cloud based services and technologies to operators, in an extremely cost effective way that can be offered either independently or in conjunction with TiVo’s renowned user interface,” said Tom Rogers, CEO and President of TiVo. “Additionally, Digitalsmiths contributes expertise, data opportunities, and approaches that complement and extend TiVo’s extensive work in advanced television to customers seeking search, recommendations, and portability. Our acquisition of Digitalsmiths will expand TiVo’s role with Tier-one US Service Providers through its significant relationships with the seven of the top ten 10 US Pay-TV providers, which serve 64 per cent of the country’s pay-TV households. Finally, we believe Digitalsmiths’ revenue growth trajectory and attractive margin structure can help accelerate TiVo’s long-term Adjusted EBITDA growth.”
Ben Weinberger, CEO and co-founder of Digitalsmiths, said that both Digitalsmiths and TiVo shared an acute focus to improve the consumers’ viewing experience, and understood the importance of the ‘service’ or ‘cloud’ to achieve this goal through next generation personalised video discovery solutions. “I look forward to working as part of the TiVo team to provide a best-in-class product set to service providers, consumer electronics manufacturer’s and content providers.”
“TiVo values our core mission of providing superior personalized video discovery experiences for our customers and partners,” said Matt Berry, COO/CTO and co-founder of Digitalsmiths. “TiVo’s acquisition of Digitalsmiths underscores the robust technology and deep customer base Digitalsmiths powers. We are confident joining forces with TiVo profoundly enhances our ability to seamlessly deliver industry leading video discovery solutions that drive superior customer satisfaction and better usage metrics for video services.”
Under the terms of the deal, TiVo will pay $135 million in cash, subject to a working capital adjustment. The transaction, which is subject to customary closing conditions, is expected to close in the first quarter of Fiscal 2015
Separately, TiVo announced that it has increased its current stock repurchase authorisation by $100 million, giving the company approximately $186 million of unused repurchase capacity as of the current date. In conjunction with this increased authorisation, TiVo intends to repurchase $100 million during the first quarter of Fiscal 2015 (after it can either modify its existing 10b5-1 plan or enter into an accelerated stock repurchase programme).