June 11, 2006 9:00 PM PDT

Kleiner Perkins bankrolls Web video-editing upstart

A start-up providing online editing tools for video clips has raised $5 million from venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins, an early backer of Google.

One True Media, based in Redwood City, Calif., plans to announce the Series A investment Monday, along with a partnership with BabyCenter.com to provide video editing tools to its community of new parents.

Video on the Web, especially video created by amateurs, is having its day in the sun with the immense popularity of sites like YouTube and MySpace.com, which often spawn viral videos posted by community members. Increasing numbers of tech novices are venturing online to share digital videos with friends and family. As a result, online services such as One True Media and VideoEgg are stepping up to support increasing demand for video editing, and to challenge desktop tools from Microsoft, Apple and Adobe.

One True Media, which was founded in 2005 with angel investments, sells subscriptions to production tools for creating montages of video, pictures and music. For $3.99 a month or $39 annually (the site is free for 60 days), a subscriber can upload personal media like pictures and music; create, edit and store a video vignette; and post the work to blogs or sites like MySpace. People can also produce a DVD for $25.

Since launching in December, about 335,000 users have registered with the site, according to the company.

One True Media CEO Mark Moore said he conceived of the idea for the company in 2004 after it took him eight hours with Apple's software to create an 8-minute montage from videos of his newborn. A former interactive TV executive at Oracle, he thought he could build something simpler and less high-end.

"We wanted to create an easy interface that lets people upload and edit video, music and pictures, and make a composition within a single number of clicks," said Moore.

People can even send tapes of video to have it digitized and uploaded to the company's site.

Moore said, on average, people spent about 40 minutes per session on One True Media. The average length of clips, which range from documentary-style video of life after Hurricane Katrina to homemade baby tributes, are between eight to 10 minutes.

Still, the company has competition with sites like VideoEgg and Muvee, and from major software companies like Apple Computer and Microsoft.

Gartner analyst Allen Weiner said he believes it could be a promising market, given demand for video-editing and -creation online. Also, he said, it might be better to support that demand than to compete with the likes of Yahoo, Microsoft, Google and MySpace to distribute video.

"In what's getting to be a very crowded market, they have found themselves a niche, albeit relatively narrow, a fairly useful niche as a one-stop production house for consumer video editing," Weiner said.

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