Joost gets $45m to play with
Inflatable board rooms a go-go
Joost; the peer-to-peer video service developed by those behind Skype, has raised $45m from Index Ventures, Sequoia Capital and the Li Ka Shing Foundation, to "...accelerate product development, global expansion, localization, and service offerings".
Index Ventures are old mates from Skype, while Sequoia Capital are new to the table. The Li Ka Shing Foundation is based out of Hong Kong and their inclusion reflects the increasing importance of Asian markets for internet businesses.
Joost is technically impressive, but for a service still in beta-testing to describe itself as "...the world's first broadcast-quality Internet television service" seems a little arrogant, especially when the recent expansion of the beta has demonstrated some scaling problems and their current content offering is less than impressive.
Episodes of "Fat Actress", "Beavis and Butthead" and "CSI" (everywhere) might make the service attractive to some, but Joost are going to have to tie up some deals for better content than that if they're going to get enough users to pay off the investment; unless the service can be sold off before that happens.®