[See update below] The Platform, an online video management company which has been owned by Comcast for the past five years, may be on the auction block again. That’s the word from Business of Video’s Dan Rayburn, who reports that Comcast has been shopping the company around for the past few months.
The most interested potential buyer, he said, is KIT digital which has been on a bit of a buying spree as of late. Based in the Czech Republic, KIT digital just last week paid $34 million for the video asset management company Polymedia. It appears that at least another deal is in the works.
Rayburn has some great insights, putting together puzzle pieces of what looks to be a possible deal. For example, he notes that Kit’s CEO showed a slide at a financial conference last week which disclosed thePlatform’s revenue of $48 million. The company also recently let it slip that it was going to be buying a company with revenue in the range of $50 million. Coincidence?
Here’s more from Rayburn’s report:
The company also said that while the deal has been taking longer to close than they anticipated, that’s primarily due to the “larger kind of parent share holding dynamic” of the company they are looking to acquire having, “other irons in the fire, so to speak.” Sounds a lot like KIT is describing Comcast’s recent merger with NBC if you ask me.
Rayburn notes that the deal may not come together, but if it does get sealed he expects the price to be in the $40 million to $50 million range.
I’ve asked around to various sources in the online video space, and I’ll update the post if I hear more. I’ve also reached out to Comcast and thePlatform for comment, but given Rayburn’s sleuthing I am expecting a big no comment on this one.
ThePlatform was founded by Ian Blaine in 2000, and he’s remained with the company through the Comcast acquisition. At that time of that deal, thePlatform employed about 70 people.
ThePlatform makes a media publishing tool used to publish and manage video across PCs, mobile phones and TVs.
Update, 3:35 p.m.: The Platform is putting a damper on these reports, at least as they relate to KIT, tweeting from its official account: “Comcast is not selling thePlatform to Kit Digital.”
A Comcast representative declined to comment.
See this Light Reading report for more of the latest details.
John Cook is co-founder of GeekWire. Follow on Twitter: @geekwirenews.