AOL Video To Pull Disparate Content Offerings Into One Place

Ran-Harnevo

AOL on Tuesday announced the creation of AOL Video to aggregate its online video library assets under one strategic umbrella, as well as to drive the creation, production and syndication of online video content. Ran Harnevo, co-founder of 5min Media -- which AOL recently acquired -- has been tapped to oversee AOL Video as Senior Vice President.

Harnevo will now be expected to lead AOL's video partnership efforts, as well as increase the presence of video across AOL sites, and oversee the distribution of content from AOL video partners across the Web.

Reporting to David Eun, President, AOL Media & Studios and David Mason, Senior Vice President, AOL Content Platform, Harnevo will also lead the development of a single online video distribution and syndication platform.

Comparing data from comScore July 2010 to October 2010, AOL video streams increased from 192 million to 493 million, an increase of 157%. "In just a few short months, you can see by the data that our commitment to video is really paying off for users and advertisers," said Eun. "We have no doubt that video is the future of content on the Web, and AOL's goal is to be the market leader at every point on the value chain."

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In the second half of the year, AOL has closed deals with more than 20 content partners and digital studios, including Vuguru, Ben Silverman's Electus, Next New Networks, Telepictures Productions and the Ellen DeGeneres Show Web site and MarloThomas.com.

Making good on its vow to bolster content, AOL acquired 5min Media at the end of September. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. The deal was part of AOL's broader content-centric strategy, which CEO Tim Armstrong has been pursuing for the last year.

To win the content game, AOL is presently hiring hundreds of journalists, editors and various multimedia creators to flesh out its content offerings.

Last December, 5min attracted 30.5 million unique viewers, according to comScore. To put that number into perspective, AOL saw 30 million unique viewers that same month. In terms of videos streamed, 5min saw 75.4 million streams, while its video library now boasts 150,000 videos across a variety of categories ranging from food and health to home and garden.

AOL said it has already begun to integrate 5min Media's video content on its sites through a commercial agreement executed prior to the acquisition.

Founded in 2006, 5min is headquartered in New York City with offices in Tel Aviv.

Other video franchises across AOL's owned and operated properties include, AOL Sessions; The Engadget Show; Translogic on AOL Autos; a number of shows on Cambio.com - Cambio Connect, Cambio Style, Cambio Goes Home, Cambio Cares; and The Secret Millionaire's Club on AOL Kids.

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