AOL Acquires StudioNow

AOL has acquired the Web video technology and syndication startup StudioNow Inc. for $36.5 million in cash and stock, said company officials.

Nashville, Tenn.-based StudioNow provides a host of video services to both large and small businesses, including production, content management and distribution. The company has worked with brands like Maxim magazine and Ford Models, as well as dozens of local firms such as Jimmy’s Burger Joint in Costa Mesa, Calif. That arrangement is part of a larger partnership with Citysearch through which StudioNow claims to have created video content for thousands of local merchants.

AOL plans to tap StudioNow for, Its burgeoning content production initiative through which the company intends to pump out low-cost content produced by a network of freelancers. With, AOL’s long-term plan is to regularly produce articles and clips covering subjects that Web users are likely interested in at any given moment — based on predictive Web data, seasonal trends and breaking news.

“The distributed production capabilities offered by StudioNow, combined with our in-house production studio and video resources, help position AOL to capitalize even more fully on the projected growth of video as it establishes itself as a key form of brand advertising in the digital space,” said AOL CEO Tim Armstrong.

AOL also announced today that it has tapped former Google product manager Jeff Reynar as its new head of technology for engineering and products in New York.