Automated Video Set To Boom: Wibbitz, Connatix Complete Funding Rounds

Digital publishers could be ready to kick off a new video boom -- but this time, videos will require minimal human intervention.

Three pieces of news Tuesday morning paint a picture of what’s to come.

First: Wibbitz, an AI-powered automated video startup, has raised $20 million in a new Series C funding round. Wibbitz, which counts the Associated Press, The Weather Channel and Bloomberg among its clients, uses AI to automatically transform text stories into short videos.

While the company has long maintained that it doesn’t want to put video producers out of business, it does allow publishers to significantly ramp up the quantity of videos on their sites, meeting demand from advertisers craving more video inventory to play against pre-roll and post-roll ads.

The second piece of news: Oath, Verizon’s in-house media division, announced on Tuesday that it would be rolling out a similar automated video product, Slick. As reported by Axios, Slick allows for text stories to be automatically transformed into “a vertical-driven mobile experience that can be used for mobile web article pages, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and within Yahoo's native apps.”

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Oath will be rolling Slick out on its TechCrunch and Engadget properties in the coming months, with others to follow. The company also owns Yahoo, HuffPost and a number of other digital publications. Oath partners, including the AP and Reuters, have signed on to have their content transformed using Slick.

Thirdly, Connatix has raised a $15 million Series A funding round. The company uses software to help publishers scale up their video content. It also allows publishers to syndicate their video content on their own properties and elsewhere. Connatix counts Time Inc., Mashable and Penske Media as clients.

As these products continue to roll out,  look for more automatically created videos proliferating across your social feeds.

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