digital-smiths

Digitalsmiths

Technology

digital-smiths

Company: Digitalsmiths
Location: Raleigh-Durham, NC
Initial Investment: June 2007
Board Representative: Wright Steenrod, Principal

Transformation of Raw Technology into Industry Market Leader Position

Company:

Digitalsmiths delivers sophisticated video search and personalized recommendations for all types of video content, including TV, film, and live events, across multiple media channels and devices. Digitalsmiths’s MetaFrame product enables content owners to create and manage frame-by-frame data that goes beyond the basic tags of title, actor, and genre, thereby creating additional value and monetization opportunities for video content. The company’s Seamless Discovery platform, launched in November 2011, allows service providers, connected device manufacturers, and content owners to provide customers with a more relevant and personalized viewing experience.

Investment Strategy Fit:

Chrysalis’s technology team seeks businesses that make information more productive and efficient. Digitalsmiths’s technology disrupts the traditional media delivery model, making content more accessible and relevant to a viewer population that has become increasingly dissatisfied with current video search options. Digitalsmiths’s data-driven technology more efficiently organizes content so users become more engaged with relevant content, resulting in increased viewership and subsequent monetization opportunities for media stakeholders.

Challenge/Opportunity:

Chrysalis was introduced to Digitalsmiths’s CEO, Ben Weinberger, at an angel investor conference by one of North Carolina’s top start-up law firms. At that time, the company was seeking to relocate its operations from Beaufort to Raleigh-Durham to expand both capital and talent options.

Solution:

Chrysalis understood Digitalsmiths’s value to a consumer base with endless entertainment options but no efficient means to find relevant content. As such, we provided the company with its first institutional capital round, partnering with the Aurora Fund for the company’s Series A financing. This financing round allowed the company to relocate to the RTP area and begin attracting top talent to further build-out its product.

After early adoption by key media customers, Chrysalis continued its support of the company via participation in the company’s Series B financing in 2008 and Series C financing in 2011. These financing rounds allowed the company to accelerate product development initiatives, make a strategic acquisition, and increase its sales and marketing initiatives to best position the company in an increasingly hot segment.

In addition to financial support, Chrysalis has used its network and industry contacts to provide guidance and advice to the company’s young management team. In 2009, Chrysalis introduced the company’s CEO to a Chrysalis LP and long-time colleague with deep industry experience. After consulting with the CEO for several months, Chrysalis’s LP became Chairman of the company’s board of directors. Additionally, Chrysalis has played an active role in recruiting other top talent to the company and remains head of the Board of Directors strategic sub-committee, a group that actively seeks advice from industry experts and acts as a sounding board for the company’s management team.

Results:

As global viewership of video content via internet connected devices and connected TVs surges, Digitalsmiths has become the go to search and recommendation technology solution for content creators, distributors, and publishers alike. With the acquisition of Gotuit in 2010, the company strengthened its IP portfolio and deepened its product offering, further strengthening the company’s position as leader in the emerging video search and recommendation space.

Current Digitalsmiths customers include Warner Bros., Paramount, Turner, The CW network, the NBA, PGA, Time Warner, Technicolor, Fox Sports, and other video content creators and distributors. The company also maintains a strategic relationship with Tribune Media Services.

Digitalsmiths was named the “Best Search and Indexing Platform for 2010” by readers of Streaming Media magazine. The company was included in the 2010 Red Herring’s Top 100 North America list, and in 2011, Digitalsmiths made the Inc. 5000 list as one of America’s fastest-growing private companies.