Roku® Inc. today announced that it has received a $60 million investment that readies the company for growth around its streaming software and services businesses. Led by one of the world’s largest institutional investors, the investment includes participation from large global media and television distribution companies. Two new Roku investors participated in the Series F round the institutional investor and Hearst Corporation which is known for its diversified media and information assets. They join prior Roku investors, including British Sky Broadcasting (BSkyB) and News Corporation in the Series F round.
The new investment will fuel Roku’s growth which has accelerated in the last year. Best known for its lineup of popular streaming players, including the new Roku 3 which has quickly become the new streaming standard in the U.S., the company is extending its streaming platform by working with other consumer electronics brands. Today, Roku is working with two dozen OEMs who are making more than 3.5 million Roku Ready® devices, predominantly TVs that will be in retail by the end of the year. Roku Ready devices access the Roku streaming platform through the Roku Streaming Stick™, a small USB-sized device sold by Roku. In the coming months, Roku will continue to expand access points to its streaming platform.
“Roku has built a strong brand that is widely recognized for great technology and a broad selection of high-quality content,” said Ken Bronfin, senior managing director at Hearst Ventures, a unit of Hearst Corporation. “We are truly impressed that Roku has built such a unique position in the market and we look forward to working with them to develop innovative products and services for our television audiences.”
As well as expanding distribution for its platform, Roku continues to provide the largest and best collection of streaming entertainment made for the TV experience. In 2012 Roku streamed more than one billion hours of video and music. Whether it’s the game of the season, an Oscar-winning movie, a favorite TV show, the hottest single or a few minutes of casual game play, Roku provides more entertainment choices and a better TV-quality experience than any other streaming device.
“Roku has a significant portfolio of investment and strategic partners with very successful global businesses. Their recognition of our brand success and belief in the Roku platform is a tremendous endorsement of our potential to shape the future television experience,” said Roku Founder and Chief Executive Officer Anthony Wood. “BSkyB and News Corporation are exceptional partners and we look forward to deepening our relationship with Hearst in the months to come.”
About Hearst Corporation
Hearst Corporation (hearst.com) is one of the nation’s largest diversified media and information companies. Its major interests include ownership of 15 daily and 36 weekly newspapers, including the Houston Chronicle, San Francisco Chronicle, San Antonio Express-News and Albany Times Union; hundreds of magazines around the world, including Good Housekeeping, Cosmopolitan, ELLE and O, The Oprah Magazine; 29 television stations, which reach a combined 18 percent of U.S. viewers; ownership in leading cable networks, including Lifetime, A&E, HISTORY and ESPN; significant holdings in automotive, electronic and medical/pharmaceutical business information companies; a 50 percent stake in global ratings agency Fitch Group; Internet and marketing services businesses; television production; newspaper features distribution; and real estate. Follow us on Twitter [.]HearstCorp.
About Roku, Inc.
Roku (roku.com) is the creator of the most popular streaming software platform for delivering video, music and casual games to the TV. Roku launched the first device to stream Netflix to the TV in 2008, and since then has sold more than 5 million Roku streaming players in the U.S. Roku players are also available in Canada, the U.K. and the Republic of Ireland. In addition, Roku works with OEMs who create Roku Ready™ devices which access the Roku streaming platform. Roku Ready devices can be purchased from major retailers in the U.S. Roku was founded by Anthony Wood, inventor of the DVR. The company is privately held and headquartered in Saratoga, Calif.
Roku and Roku Ready are registered trademarks and Roku Streaming Stick is a trademark of Roku, Inc. in the U.S. and in other countries.