Discovery Communications has acquired San Francisco-based digital video provider Revision3, a company that creates Web-based video content with a heavy emphasis on gaming and tech.
The deal had been rumored all week, but Discovery made the official announcement today. Discovery declined to talk terms, but sources close to the deal put the price tag in the $30 million range.
Echoing sentiments expressed at this week's round of digital video NewFront presentations, J. B. Perrette, Discovery's Chief Digital Officer, said that the cable conglomerate is looking to widen its appeal across screens as digital video becomes more popular. "We want to be the leader across that billion devices in the U.S.," Perrette said.
One of the attractive things about digital is the low cost of content, Perrette said. "The tone is much more personal, much more intimate, and the production values are very different, and the cost of producing this content is a tenth of what it is for television."
Revision3 also brings some know-how to the table. The company's broad portfolio indicates a depth of experience in content curation that will hopefully prove valuable to Discovery, Perrette added.
As for what's next for Revision3, Perrette said the new subsidiary will get "the keys to the vault" to help create new content with Discovery's large library of raw footage. It will also serve as an "incubation platform" for talent who can potentially cross over into television, he added. There is also the potential to revitalize old franchises. Perrette points to VH1's "I Love the 80's" and "Pop Up Video," which were repurposed MTV content.
But given the low production expenses at Revision3, especially by comparison to Discovery's usual per-show prices, there are quite a few possibilities for the future. "Your cost of trial and experimentation is very low," said Perrette.