Joost has been a viral hit thus far and many investors want in. Given that YouTube’s model gives a lot of power to users, the company is struggling to conform to the demands made by television networks. Viacom announced recently that they would be suing YouTube for $1 billion because of this.
However, it is in the television networks’ interest to partner with companies that have growing user bases and can host video content for them. This is why it does not shock me that Sequoia Capital, Index Ventures, CBS Corporation, Viacom Inc., and Li Ka-Shing (the 9th richest man in the world – $23 billion) have invested a total of $45 million in Joost. Sequoia Capital is also an early investor in Google and YouTube.
“This funding represents a tremendous vote of confidence in Joost’s platform,” stated Janus Friis and Niklas ZennstrÃ¶m, co-founders of Joost. “We’ve carefully selected these investors from a variety of interested parties” because they can help Joost “accelerate growth and development of the company.”
[Information Source: WSJ]
The same founders of Joost also created Skype and Kazaa. Skype was acquired by eBay Inc. for a few billion dollars and Kazaa faced legal battles with the RIAA over music download abilities. Joost also has a dark side: spyware support.
I still have hundreds of invites so if anyone wants them, comment on this post.