Vubiquity Buys UK-based FilmFlex, Beefs Up Video, Digital Assets

As part of a broader expansion strategy, the multiplatform video specialists at Vubiquity have acquired UK-based FilmFlex Movies.
Formerly a joint venture between Sony Pictures Television and The Walt Disney Company Limited, FilmFlex is one of the larger VOD and multiplatform providers outside the United States.
With FilmFlex, Vubiquity is getting an established digital storefront and video-on-demand business in the UK. To date, the company has racked up roughly 90 million transactions, by its own count. The company also boasts licensing agreements with some major U.S. studios, and independent distributors. Brand partners include Virgin Media, TalkTalk, Film4 and EE.
“With FilmFlex we add additional studio assets and licensing and gain important front-end technology to enable EST and other monetization models for multiplatform video consumption,” stated Darcy Antonellis, CEO of Vubiquity.
The deal follows the launch of Vubiquity’s AnyVU Cloud platform, which offers a set of modular services, including a library of licensed content for both linear and on-demand, set-top box delivery and direct-to-subscriber streaming, and electronic sell-through (EST).
Per the deal, FilmFlex’s digital storefront and other assets will be integrated into the new platform and subsequently offered as part of the suite of modular services.
Within three to five years, a majority of brand marketers and agency executives expect digital video programming to become as important to their bottom line as TV programming. That’s according to a recent survey of 297 buy-side executives conducted by the research firm Advertiser Perceptions on behalf of the Interactive Advertising Bureau.
Yet to call the results of the survey optimistic would be an understatement. Domestic digital video ad spending is expected to reach $5.89 billion, this year — up 44% from $4.18 billion last year, according to eMarketer. By contrast, TV advertising will increase 3.3% in 2014 to reach $68.54 billion, according to the researcher.
In terms of ad spending, TV will still add more new dollars than digital video in 2014 — $2.19 billion for TV compared to $1.71 billion for digital video, according to eMarketer.
The explanation behind why the Web has continued to attract more ad dollars in recent years is no simple matter. Industrywide efforts to produce better content has coincided with significant digital investments by publishers. Major improvements in the technology that allows for the distribution and monetization of their content.     

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