Metacafe Acquires Action Sports

Online video hub Metacafe has acquired Action Sports, a company that produces and streams live fringe sporting events on the Web.

At the center of the deal is Action Sports’, which showcases sports such as BMX, skateboarding and competitive blackjack. According to the analytics firm Compete, Go211’s audience peaked earlier this year at close to 2.7 million unique users, before landing at 1.5 million unique visitors in July.

According to sources, as a result of the Action Sports deal, Metacafe expects to double its revenue next year and reach profitability. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

As part of the agreement, Action Sports CEO Sean Aruda will assume the role of chief revenue officer at Metacafe.

While Go211 will continue to exist as a stand-alone Web destination, Metacafe plans to utilize Go211’s video content within its own soon-to-launch sports channel. Besides action sports, Metacafe plans to tap into Go211’s live event experience to produce more original content for its movies, TV and videogame coverage, said officials.

The planned sports channel launch is part of an ongoing reinvention of Metacafe — which just a few years ago was a repository for user-generated videos.

But instead of chasing YouTube, the company has shifted to concentrate on professional content aimed at 18-34-year-olds. In fact, Metacafe now regularly sends reporters to movie premieres and conducts exclusive interviews with celebrities and filmmakers.