Six Questions for Terry Kawaja

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Six Questions for Terry KawajaLUMAscape architect and dynamic investment banker Terry Kawaja is joining us at The Seller Forum on March 12th to talk about the consolidating video marketing world. To prep for his talk at the Forum, six questions:

 Is the Video LUMAscape starting to significantly consolidate? Some examples please.

We’ve seen 29 transactions across the Video LUMAscape just in the last 18 months starting with Aol/Adap.tv. These transactions range from content plays (e.g. Disney / Maker, Amazon / Twitch and AT&T / Fullscreen) to monetization platforms (e.g. Comcast / FreeWheel, Facebook / LiveRail and Yahoo / BrightRoll). These deals are reflective of the continued growth in digital video but also the coming convergent TV sector.

 Do all those YouTube videos help Google run the table and own web and mobile video or is there hope for others?

Video does not quite have the same network/scale advantages of search so it should proliferate to all publishers. YouTube ‘s strong position (nearly 40% of all video views in 2013) has new competitors (Facebook, Amazon, Vessel) and we will likely see the viewership splinter over time.

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 What’s surprised you most in the video picture of the last 12 months?

The pace of Facebook’s growth has been staggering and surprising: in October 2014, Facebook actually saw more video views that YouTube. YouTube is more akin to a portal (and people don’t navigate to portals) whereas Facebook’s video discovery is in the feed and shared socially. This will be interesting to watch.

I’ve heard that those crazy young people are streaming their favorite shows over the web now. Are we going to show them commercials like we do on the web or like we do on regular old TV?

The TV ad experience and inherent value proposition is based on interruption. Viewers put up with (or ignore) ads in return for their desired content. I believe that this value proposition has to change in a mobile context and that may threaten the mobile video pre roll or interstitial. Ad creative has to be better (a good thing) and the value proposition may need to change to facilitation, not interruption.

 Deal that looked big but wasn’t? And under the radar deal that’s really significant?

So far the $45 billion Comcast / TWC deal looks threatened. I mused that Comcast could have used the same $45 billion to instead buy a basket of tech unicorn startups that included Uber, Dropbox, Snapchat and Box. One year later, the TWC deal has gone nowhere and the basket is now worth over double! I think the Telstra / Ooyala deal, while under the radar, is interesting because it represents a new entrant buyer (in this case, a monopoly foreign telco) that has set its growth sights on digital video and has more deals to come.

When you did your cameo on Mad Men was Jon Hamm nice to you?

Unlike the character he plays, it turns out Jon Hamm is a super nice guy. He treated the cast and crew very well.

There are just 15 open seats left for The Seller Forum on March 12th in New York.  If you lead a national media sales team, you won’t want to miss key insights on video, viewability, talent, first half outlook and more.  Request your invitation today.

 

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