Venture Capital Investment for Streaming Services Booms in 2014

By Chris Smith on June 23, 2015

A recent industry article quotes William Goldman, a screenwriter whose success dates back to the 1950s, as saying that no one can predict what will work at the box office. In this industry, however, it isn't just about what you can predict. There is also the need to look at what's happening right now. And that vision is 20/20.

That TechCrunch article points to the media and entertainment industry receiving $2 billion in venture capital investment in a total of 127 deals in 2014. That's up from the 2009 figure of only $200 million in 54 deals. Clearly, the industry is booming.


Investors aren't shying away from newcomers because giants such as Netflix have shown considerable success. Some of those newcomers are actually names you have heard before. For instance, Showtime is expected to release its new cordcutter streaming service early this July in time for the new seasons of Ray Donovan and Masters of Sex. It will compete directly with HBO Go and popular shows such as Game of Thrones.

Sony is even in the game with its PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 3 consoles. With Sony Vue, Users can sign up for access to 85 different cable channels they can stream through the popular gaming systems.

Then there are the unknowns -- players such as Philo which is reaching out to universities with its Internet TV service. TechCrunch again reports the role venture capital investment plays in this rollout: $10 million in the first round.

There are a lot of different avenues for investors and streaming startups to explore. Philo has its own niche while Sony, although not exactly a startup, is going in a completely different direction. And those two are in good company from national giants like Netflix to startups like Zype. It's no wonder that investment skyrocketed in 2014. We expect the same sort of growth this year as even more players jump into the fold.

Feature and header images courtesy of Pictures of Money and Bill Selak. Inline image courtesy of Woodford Yang.

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