EU Moves Ahead with Streaming Content Quotas
Brussels: The European Parliament has voted to revise EU rules on audiovisual media services.
The changes include the introduction of a minimum quota of European content, stricter rules on advertising, and enhanced protection of minors.
The guidelines will require that at least 30 percent of content carried on streaming services operating in the European Union originates from the region.
On-demand platforms are also being asked to contribute to the development of European movie and TV series, either by directly investing in content or by contributing to national subsidies with the level of contribution in each country must be proportional to the on-demand revenues in that country.
The legislation is yet to be formally approved by the European Council following which, Member States will have 21 months to incorporate the new rules into their countrys’ legislation.
Upland Software Makes Second EU Acquisition This Year
London: Austin TX based Upland Software Inc., has announced the acquisition of Rant & Rave Limited for $58.5m.
U.K. based Rant & Rave is a provider of cloud-based customer engagement solutions which will be integrated within the Upland Mobile Messaging (UMM) platform and supported for delivery via SMS, Multimedia Messaging Service (MMS), Rich Communication Services (RCS), mobile wallet, and text-to-call.
In March, Upland made their first EU acquisition when they acquired Irish based, InterFax.
Instana Secures $30m To Expand Globally
Dusseldorf: Instana, the first monitoring solution to fully automate all aspects of application performance monitoring (APM), has raised $30 million in Series C investment led by Palo Alto based, Meritech Capital with participation from existing investor Accel.
The round brings company’s total funding to date to $57 million.
The investment will be used to fulfill increasing demand for Instana’s automated monitoring solution for containerized microservice applications across global markets and expand its product line.
Founded in 2015, Instana’s customers include large enterprise brands across industry verticals including Audi, ClearScore, Sixt Rent-a-Car, Edmunds.com, Yahoo Japan, Macmillan Learning and Franklin American Mortgage.
Preservica Raises $10m To Push International Expansion
Oxford: Preservica, an Oxford, U.K. and Boston MA, based digital content storage company has secured $10m funding to drive product development and to scale its business internationally.
Mobeus Equity Partners is making the investment, providing an initial $5.3m with a facility for a further $4.7m to support continued global expansion plans.
Preservica provides a software platform that future-proofs all types of digital content against technology obsolescence, ensuring it remains accessible and trustworthy over decades whilst maintaining legal, compliance, governance and brand value needs.
WeWork’s European Business Losses Triple in 2017
London: WeWork’s European business losses tripled to $42 million in 2017, from $14.3m in 2016.
However, the financial statements for their UK & EU business show that revenues in the UK business doubled to $153.8m with membership numbers increasing by 77% to 23,000.
Wework’s UK business has 40 sites (38 in London) with plans to add a further 16.
London is Wework’s 2nd largest base, after New York.
German Cleanroom Technology Specialist Pulls IPO
Stuttgart: Exyte, a German builder of factories used by companies that design and build semiconductors, has pulled its IPO plan for the Frankfurt Stock Exchange after receiving muted feedback from investors.
Sources close to the Exyte plans suggested that stock worth up to 1 billion Euros ($1.15 billion) was expected to be offered in a deal that could have valued the company, formerly known as M+W Group, at as much as 3 billion Euros.
Investors were unimpressed at the valuation of the company, whose projected earnings growth was seen as ambitious.
Finland’s VR Headset Company Raises $31m in Series B Funding
Helsinki: Varjo Technologies, the Finnish startup that made the news earlier this year with its development of a virtual reality headset capable of “human-eye resolution,” has raised $31 million in Series B funding.
The funding will be led by Atomico, with participation from Next 47, EQT Ventures, and Lifeline Ventures.
Founded in 2016, Varjo aims to bring to market “the world’s first” human-eye resolution virtual reality (VR) and mixed reality (XR) product, which will be orders of magnitude higher in resolution than existing consumer headsets, such as Magic Leap or Microsoft’s HoloLens.
The company says it is on track to commercially launch its VR headset later this year, with an AR/XR add-on to the headset available in H1 2019.