Video services

TVN, Avail Media Merge

SHERMAN OAKS, Calif., and RESTON, Va. -- TVN Entertainment Corp., the world’s largest video on demand (VOD) company, and Avail Media, the only independent aggregator and provider of linear content, today announced that they are merging. Together, TVN and Avail Media represent the first fully integrated, end-to-end solution for content owners and service providers. Columbia Capital, Novak Biddle Venture Partners, Valhalla Partners, Pioneer Ventures and the National Rural Telecommunications Cooperative (NRTC) have invested to create a scalable and extensible platform enabling delivery of next generation video distribution services. Terms were not disclosed.

“We are moving quickly to an environment in which consumers can access any type of program – movies, TV shows, sports, news – on any device at any time,” said Phil Herget of Columbia Capital. “No one company has assembled all the necessary components to ensure that content is provisioned, packaged, protected and delivered across multiple view platforms, multiple distribution partners in support of multiple business models in a seamless and integrated way. The combination of TVN and Avail provides the end-to-end solution to enable our customers to meet these evolving consumer demands.”

The combination creates the largest independent provider of end-to-end content aggregation, management, and service offerings, delivering content from more than 200 content partners, including Hollywood movie studios, cable networks and independent content producers to more than 46 million homes and 120 million consumers.

Through this merger, both Avail Media and TVN Entertainment will extend the technologies and content offerings available to their customers on a global basis; today the companies provide services to nearly every television provider in North America. These expanded services include Video over Broadband (VoB), targeted advertising and interactive applications. In addition to the extensive Hollywood movie studio content available from both companies, joint customers will now enjoy the ability to offer linear programming from national broadcasters and even more localized, genre-specific, ethnic/international, and long-tail content to distribute to their subscribers.

“In these challenging times, delivering value to consumers and investing in the future takes on even greater importance for our customers,” said Ramu Potarazu, CEO of the newly created company and former President and COO of Intelsat. “The combined platform and reach of TVN Entertainment and Avail Media allows content owners and service providers of all types to outsource the manual, specialized function of managing and delivering video entertainment via an expert organization that performs these functions efficiently and cost effectively now and in the future. Whether it is delivering video to the television screen today, or to the PC and mobile device tomorrow, our team shares a common vision of enabling both content owners and service providers to profitably deliver the services consumers want.”

“TVN’s shareholders, management, and staff are excited about the opportunities that the combination of TVN and Avail will create,” said Michael Petrick of Morgan Stanley and Chairman of the Board of TVN. “We are grateful to the management team and our Board for their hard work and to our shareholders for their support over the last eight years.”

TVN used Cowen and Company as its exclusive financial advisor and Montgomery & Hansen, LLP as its legal advisor. Avail Media was advised by Cooley Godward Kronish LLP.

TVN Entertainment Corp.

Avail Media Inc.

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