Twitter to Buy Startup SnappyTV in Continuing Media Push

Still Intent on Expanding Its Pull on TV

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Twitter headquarters.
Twitter headquarters. Credit: Troy Holden/Twitter

Twitter said it is buying video-editing startup SnappyTV to become more useful to the TV industry, as the microblogging service looks to expand its footprint in the media business.

SnappyTV's technology for editing and live clipping is already widely used by media companies that Twitter works with, the San Francisco-based company said in a blog post today. The deal will let TV broadcasters, event producers and others to more easily edit, distribute and share video on Twitter, the company said. Terms of the deal weren't disclosed.

Jim Prosser, a spokesman for Twitter, didn't immediately return requests for comment.

"As we continue to invest in video, it's important for us to provide tools that make it easy for TV broadcasters, businesses, and event producers to share high-quality videos," Baljeet Singh, Twitter's director of product management, wrote in the post.

Twitter has been increasing its video features to appeal to media companies, which are experimenting with using the service to interact more directly and in real time with their viewers. Twitter in April added messaging to its Vine video application and last year incorporated a tool for advertisers to let them target users posting about TV shows. The company is under pressure to add more members and improve engagement, as its user growth has decelerated over the past few quarters.

Chloe Sladden, who ran and had built up Twitter's media team that works with TV companies and live events, stepped down earlier this month following the resignation of Chief Operating Officer Ali Rowghani.

Advertising bonus?
The deal will help boost Twitter's online advertising business, said Anthony DiClemente, an analyst at Nomura Securities.

"The media companies are trying to partner with Twitter in a way that helps to engage viewers in the best way possible, and if viewers are engaged in rich media, it's a win-win for Twitter and brand marketers," he said in an interview. "The more premium video that the platform offers to the viewer, the more the brand marketers want to put their own ads next to that content."

SnappyTV, based in San Francisco, was founded by Mike Folgner, Yahoo's former general manager of video, four years ago. The company was already working with Twitter, as well as other companies including Google's YouTube, according to its website.

"With Twitter we will continue our commitment to maintaining an open platform for social broadcasting of live events, across a variety of digital platforms," the company said in a blog post.

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