Twenty-two days into the new year and we have our first major LA Tech acquisition of 2019. Live television streaming platform Pluto TV has been acquired by media giant Viacom for $340M in cash. “Since our launch less than five years ago, and particularly over the past year, Pluto TV has enjoyed explosive growth and become the category leader in free streaming television,” remarked Pluto TV CEO and Cofounder Tom Ryan. “Viacom’s portfolio of global, iconic brands and IP, advanced advertising leadership and international reach will enable Pluto TV to grow even faster and become a major force in streaming TV worldwide. Viacom is the perfect partner to help us accomplish our mission of entertaining the planet.”
Founded by Ryan and Ilya Pozin in 2013, Pluto TV had raised a total of $51.8M in funding over six rounds with the last round in October of 2017. Investors in Pluto TV include U.S. Venture Partners (USVP), Great Oaks Venture Capital, Pritzker Group Venture Capital, Samsung Ventures, QueensBridge Venture Partners, Chicago Ventures, Third Wave Digital, Sky, Universal Music Group, UTA Ventures, Luminari Capital, Mike Jones, Scripps Networks, ProSiebenSat.1 Media SE, Rho West, and. Sallfort Privatbank AG.
Pluto TV will continue to operate as an independent subsidiary of Viacom and Ryan will remain at the helm. “Today marks an important step forward in Viacom’s evolution, as we work to move both our company and the industry forward. Pluto TV’s unique and market-leading product, combined with Viacom’s brands, content, advanced advertising capabilities, and global scale, creates a great opportunity for consumers, partners, and Viacom,” remarked Bob Bakish, Viacom President and CEO.