Video startup raises $3.5M to keep Twitter from spoiling live sports streams

by Andreas Rekdal
April 3, 2017

Real-time video streaming just took another step toward wide-scale adoption.

Video streaming startup PhenixP2P announced on Monday that it has closed a $3.5 million Series A round of funding. KB Partners led the round, in which all of the startup’s existing investors also participated.

Phenix will use the funding to support the continued development of its streaming platform, and to scale its sales and marketing efforts.

“We’re off to the races,” said Chief Operating Officer Tripp Welge. “We’ve ventured into pilot programs with some really big names, ranging from the largest tech companies in the world to some of the largest media companies, sports leagues and movie studios out there.”

Currently, video streaming technologies divide into two camps: those designed for real-time interaction, like Google Hangouts or Skype, and technologies designed to reach large audiences in high definition. For the latter, delays of more than one minute are commonplace.

With its distributed cloud infrastructure and entirely new protocol for encoding, transmitting and decoding video, Phenix cuts that delay down to less than half a second.

Welge declined to share the names of any specific companies Phenix partners with, but he said the list includes movie studios and “significant U.S. sports leagues.”

The startup has previously highlighted live sports as a particularly important use case for its technology, because social media updates can introduce spoilers for cord-cutting sports fans. Outside of television, Phenix has its eyes on e-sports, social media and online education.

Pilot programs have been an important part of Phenix’s business development strategy, Welge said, because its technology represents such a significant shift from the current industry standard.

“It’s never been done before,” he said. “There’s skepticism in that world that obviously needs to be overcome, so we’ve been spending a lot of our time building demos to show people what we can do.”

The Phenix team has grown from around 10 to 16 this year, with the majority of its employees based in Chicago. After closing the funding round, Welge said he looks forward to returning his focus to sales and onboarding new customers.

Image via PhenixP2P.

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