Monday, May 11, 2009 10:07 AM
NBC Universal's Peacock Equity has provided a $3 million of the $8.25 million third round for publisher-based search engine EveryZing's. Previous backers Fairhaven Capital, Accel Partners, General Catalyst Partners and BBN Technologies also participated. The company has raised about $22 million to date. Proceeds will go towards sales and marketing.
EveryZing has had a winding path to get to the point of a B2B-based video search-engine optimizer. The company was originally known as PodZinger when its main product centered around a "speech-to-text" technology developed by BBN Technologies over three years ago. Even before that, the company grew out of a $100 million plan to offer a solution to monitor telephony and broadcast for national-security purposes. That plan was dropped in favor of developing a tool that would aid advertising on podcasts. But podcasts never took off like many expected. Instead, video seemed to be a much more lucrative area, and so, the company rechristened itself and broadened its capabilities beyond audio. As EveryZing, the Cambridge, Mass.-based company branched out into video discovery and engagement for premium content.
And that's where NBCU came in. The two started talking about six months ago and will announce a master-services agreement. As NBCU has been building up its own video offerings separate from its involvement with Hulu, the company decided it wanted to have closer ties to a video SEO specialist. "Big media companies have sunk all this cost into all their premium content and the web represents all this unlimited shelf space," said EveryZing CEO Tom Wilde in an interview with paidContent. "The ability to repackage and republish that content is a highly leveraged activity for them. The way the master-services agreement works, NBCU will be able to deploy our services across any of their properties, including NBC.com, CNBC iVillage, and so on." More after the jump
I asked Jessica Schell, NBCU's SVP, Digital Strategy and Business Development, about the reasons the company decided to make an investment in EveryZing, as opposed to simply using it as a vendor. "EveryZing has the most accurate video search technology available. It combines video-to-text and semantic search capabilities that will help consumers access our video offerings. The filtering abilities will make it easy to sort videos according to date, text, format." NBCU will use EveryZing on starting on three websites, Schell said, including PetSide, a pet health site, HealthVideo.com and the finance cable channel's CNBC.com property.
As for whether the discovery tools EveryZing provides would be able to help it target ads to users, Schell said, "I think there's potential for that down the line. Our initial focus is mainly centered on users and search engines finding our content."