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IBM acquires Ustream

IBM has acquired Ustream, a provider of cloud-based live video streaming services. The move will extend the IBM Cloud platform to help enterprise clients unlock the value of video, a rapidly-evolving digital media and data asset. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Ustream provides cloud-based video streaming to enterprises and broadcasters for everything from corporate keynotes to live music concerts. The company streams live and on-demand video to about 80 million viewers per month for customers such as NASA, Samsung, Facebook, Nike and The Discovery Channel.

Ustream joins the newly-formed IBM Cloud Video Services unit that combines assets from IBM’s R&D labs and strategic acquisitions. IBM will deliver a powerful portfolio of video services that spans open API development, digital and visual analytics, simplified management and consistent delivery across global industries.

The unit will be led by General Manager, Braxton Jarratt, and will target the $105 billion opportunity in cloud-based video services and software, according to IBM estimates.

“Video has become a first-class data type in business that requires accelerated performance and powerful analytics that allows clients to extract meaningful insights,” said Robert LeBlanc, Senior Vice President, IBM Cloud. “Aligning our expansive video and cloud innovations into an integrated unit will create opportunities for clients to take advantage of this medium in the most strategic way possible.”

Video has become a primary method for engaging with customers and employees through a wide range of media assets, including webcasts, conference keynotes, training & education webinars, customer care, how-to videos, and more.

As a result, clients across industries require a secure, scalable, and open cloud-based solution to manage video services. This is especially significant given researchers estimate that 80% of the world’s data is unstructured and dark to computer systems that cannot effectively manage or exploit it. Video makes up a significant part of that data.

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