Live Interactive Internet Broadcasting Company, Ustream, in Asian Joint Venture with Japan's Softbank

--Two New Ustream Apps Launched for Japanese iPhone Users

Live Internet broadcasting service provider, Ustream (note: in addition to enabling live one-to-many streaming, the company offers users of its service a social TV experience via its Social Stream capability, which enables real-time interactions through Twitter, Facebook, MySpace and AIM integrations), and Japan's Softbank--which in February was revealed to have led a Series B funding round for Ustream that could provide the company with as much as $75 million in new funding--on Tuesday announced the launch of Ustream Asia, a joint venture partnership expanding Ustream's business into the Asia Pacific region.

The companies describe the process through which Ustream Asia will be financed and established as follows: "Softbank will invest to this new joint venture through TV Bank Corporation (Head office: Minato-ku, Tokyo; President: Tomotaka Nakagawa) which is a wholly owned subsidiary of Softbank, and a preparatory company is expected be established on May 19, 2010, and then it will be transformed into a joint venture company. In addition, Softbank plans to complete additional investment of USD 10 million (Approximately JPY 0.9 billion) in Ustream in June 2010. After this investment, Softbank's total investment ratio will be 19.04%, and assuming all available options granted to Softbank to acquire additional shares are exercised by July 2011, Softbank's total investment is expected to be approximately USD 75 million (investment ratio expected over 30%) and will result in Softbank becoming Ustream's top shareholder. Softbank has completed its initial investment of approximately USD 20 million (approximately JPY 1.8 billion, investment ratio of 13.55%) in Ustream on January 29, 2010, after then, several discussions were taken place [sic] for establishment of a joint venture company."

According to the companies, Ustream Asia will "begin as a Japanese Ustream presence with the goal of expansion into the broader Asia Pacific region." Ustream launched a Japanese version of its service last month, and has now released two Japanese Ustream applications for the Apple iPhone: Ustream Viewer, which allows users to watch live video on the iPhone; and Ustream broadcaster, which allows users to stream live video from that device.

Region: 
Asia