IAC shines spotlight on video streaming service Vimeo


By Jennifer Saba

Nov 17 (Reuters) - As one of the media properties tuckedaway within IAC/Interactive Corp's vast group of onlineholdings, executives are putting the spotlight on Vimeo,breaking out the number of users and revenue for the first time.

IAC revealed that Vimeo has an audience of more than 100million unique users, 400,000 paying subscribers and about $40million in revenue over the past 12 months ending October.

"We have a number of assets that could live on their own,"said IAC Chief Executive Greg Blatt. "Vimeo, we believe, is anasset that will reach that status."

As a video web site, Vimeo competes with Google's YouTube and other streaming video services though it is knownfor attracting a niche audience of creative professionals.

Founded in 2004 by a group of filmmakers under media mogulBarry Diller's IAC, Vimeo has been grouped with company's othermedia properties such as Ben Silverman's Electus productionstudio.

Anyone can post content to Vimeo's platform or watch it forfree, but the company charges $60 or $200 a year for morecomprehensive editing tools depending on the package.

"We have begun to turn our attention to how do we build abusiness around the viewers," said Kerry Trainor, Vimeo's chiefexecutive officer.

Part of that strategy is giving Vimeo subscribers a way tocharge for their own content. Vimeo takes a 10 percent cut ofthe revenue.

"Vimeo has proven there is an entire world of really highquality content out there, just as YouTube showed the power ofbroadcasting," Trainor said.

Vimeo hired News Corp executive vice president Greg Claymanin October to grow Vimeo's audience by building partnershipswith content creators.

IAC also houses a collection of search and dating sites suchas Ask.com and Match.com, which represent a majority of thecompany's revenue and operating income.

In recent quarters, IAC's search business - its largest -has been slowing. It is turning to other revenue sources such asvideo to keeps its growth streak alive.

Jason Helfstein, a research managing director at Oppenheimer& Co, estimates that Vimeo's average valuation at the mid-pointis about $500 million.

"It has been one of IAC's most successful startups," hesaid.

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