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IBM might buy live video service UStream for $130 million

The move would put the streaming outfit firmly into the business space.
Timothy J. Seppala, @timseppala
January 21, 2016
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Bloomberg via Getty Images

The first name that comes to mind when you hear "live-streaming video" might be Twitch, but even despite how that service has grown, it isn't exactly something you'd use for video conferencing or at work. Regardless of how much you want to drop a few Kappas to spice up a meeting. Which is why the Fortune report stating IBM is looking to buy UStream (which has been targeting business customers of late) doesn't seem too far-fetched. The publication's sources peg the deal in the neighborhood of $130 million cash in addition to "possible earn-outs and employee retention packages." It's a pretty paltry sum when compared against Amazon's $970 million Twitch purchase.

Fortune also notes that the relationship between the two goes back to 2014 when the pair partnered for streaming video with IBM's Bluemix cloud platform.

The implications? Possibly extending the enterprise variety of live video streaming and collaboration tools. Considering that Twitch is leading the way for consumer-level streaming, and that even YouTube is in a distant second place, targeting businesses (UStream hosted a few broadcasts from CES this year, for example) and partnering with IBM seems like a pretty smart move. But there's no word yet on what this could mean for UStream regarding its other applications -- like streaming from game consoles. We've reached out to IBM and UStream for comment and will update this post should either respond.

[Image credit: Bloomberg via Getty Images]

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