In a rare foray into M&A, Amazon Web Services Inc. (AWS) is buying venture capital-backed Elemental Technologies Inc. Owned by Amazon.com Inc. (Nasdaq: AMZN), AWS is the leading provider of cloud-computing infrastructure in the world. Elemental develops software that enables companies to re-format video produced for traditional broadcast networks so that it can be distributed over the Internet on PCs, smartphones, tablets and TV. Terms of the deal, announced late Sept. 3, are undisclosed, but reports peg it at $500 million.
Elemental has raised about $44 million in venture capital funding from firms including General Catalyst Partners, Luminari Capital, Norwest Venture Partners, Steamboat Ventures, Telstra Ventures and Voyage Capital. To date, Portland, Oregon-based Elemental boasts more than 700 media companies as customers and provides the technology behind over-the-top TV (OTT) applications, including the BBC’s iPlayer, CNNGo, ESPN ScoreCenter, HBO GO, MSNBC Shift, Sky Go and Sky Now. Additionally, Elemental is supporting the world’s first 4K Ultra HD services including those that were delivered by the BBC during the 2014 World Cup.