"YouTube Is Doomed" Guy Throws In The Towel And Sells His Company

Benjamin Wayne

Photo: Fliqz

Almost two years ago, Benjamin Wayne, CEO of web video startup Fliqz, attracted a lot of attention with a guest post for this site, in which he essentially argued that YouTube was doomed.”Despite massive growth, ubiquitous global brand awareness, presidential endorsement, and the world’s greatest repository of illegally-pirated video content, Google’s massive video folly is on life-support, and the prognosis is grave,” Wayne wrote.

(We followed up with him here in 2010, and he talked about it with AdAge in 2009, too.)

Fast forward two years, and it’s clear that YouTube is anything but doomed.¬†

But Wayne’s own Fliqz has been sold — or rather, the assets of Fliqz — to another web video company called VBrick.

Online video industry watcher Dan Rayburn pegs the deal at “well less” than $20 million, and was told that Fliqz had about $5 million in revenue last year. Wayne, who signed up about 600 customers, including MLB, WebMD, Nokia, and others, will not be staying at VBrick.

For a company that has raised $12 million in venture capital, that’s not a good result. It’s not horrendous, but it’s not good, either.

Meanwhile, YouTube continues to be a hugely popular site, and is becoming increasingly important to Google, too. (YouTube revenue more than doubled last year, Google said on its Q4 earnings call.)

Yes, Google has changed YouTube to focus more on professional content as opposed to the early “dog on skateboard” stuff. But it’s still not going anywhere.

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