Thanks to our friend and investor Ian Sigalow, Co-Founder and Partner of Greycroft, for the excellent mention of JW Player in his recent blog post, titled, “The Great Deflation”. He shares the story of JW Player’s origins and growth, and discusses how its unique data set will help to assure the company’s future. Below is an excerpt from the piece, which I encourage you read in its entirety, as Ian offers a valuable perspective on the current landscape of the software industry:
“Back in 2011, my friend Geoff Judge introduced me to a start-up called Longtail Video. At the time Longtail had a popular video player with 500K free users, and a smaller number of customers who had paid a one-time license fee. It took a year of discussion before we finally invested behind a plan to turn Longtail into a SaaS company. Longtail’s website got a lot of free traffic, so we thought we could convert those free users into paid users, reduce our sales and marketing expenses, and pass those savings on to customers in the form of lower prices.
Fast forward to today, and JW Player (as the company is now called) streams about 5% of all the video on the Internet. They continue to provide a free product too, and that version is now used by over 2.5 million publishers.”