From Visualizing to Realizing the Future of Video: A Big Congrats to Kaltura on the IPO
Today is an exciting day at Sapphire Ventures. Another one of our portfolio companies has gone public, becoming a true company of consequence! Kaltura, which is on a mission to power any video experience for any organization, is now trading on NASDAQ as KLTR!
As Kaltura embarks on this next chapter of their journey, we’d like to take a moment to reflect on what has made Kaltura so special, on the market opportunity for video today and on what’s ahead.
When we first teamed up with Kaltura
Ron Yekutiel, Kaltura co-founder and CEO and his team have always believed that video was going to be the most powerful and engaging digital tool for human interaction. Since the company began in 2006, Kaltura has been committed to creating better communication, learning and TV experiences. And the team has had a prescient vision of video as a way to revolutionize how people connect, collaborate, work, learn and entertain by making it a seamless and accessible part of everyone’s lives.
We actually passed on our first opportunity to invest in Kaltura. The company was growing rapidly, but it was still early and the team was trying to tackle a lot. We would make the same mistake the second time around, which Ron loves to remind us of. To our defense, we finally got it right on the third try as we had seen the business execute to plan and deliver on building out a broad platform. Not only did we invest, but we backed up the truck and wrote the largest single check Sapphire had written at that point in time. We had finally realized it takes a certain amount of chutzpa to say you’re going to power every video experience and were excited to go big, co-leading Kaltura’s Series D in 2014.
Fast forward to now, not only has Kaltura continued to kick-butt serving educational institutions, enterprises, media companies and telecoms giants globally, but they’ve expanded the product line (organically and through three acquisitions) to keep up with technology and standards evolutions like the rise of OTT and RTC. This put Kaltura in a position to keep on their growth path, and to accelerate their vision as 2020 became the year where the world had to run remote and mostly on video. The market for Kaltura’s live and on-demand video SaaS solutions really reached an inflection point over the past year, becoming essential to operating any organization.
What a special team looks like
Ultimately, it’s all about the people that build the most successful companies, so Kaltura’s exceptional co-founders; Ron Yekutiel (CEO), Michal Tsur (President), Shay David (Board Director) and Eran Etam, all deserve a mention here.
Beyond appreciating the execution capabilities of the team at Kaltura, we appreciate them as people. There’s a saying that once you’re a Kalturian you’re always a Kalturian. It’s the kind of group where you exchange hugs instead of handshakes at board meetings. And it’s the kind of group where they don’t just know you’re getting married, they want to plan a second ceremony for you in Israel.
While Kaltura’s current headquarters are in New York, it was founded in Israel, and we were lucky enough to visit the team in their home country early on in our relationship. The trip was a while ago, but remains fresh in our minds and will forever be an experience of a lifetime. After they worked us to the bone “light for a Kalturian” they’d likely say, the Kaltura team was kind enough to act as our tour guides, showing us the cultural wonders of the country, while introducing us to their incredible cuisine and delicious snacks. To this day, we still get our favorite Israeli snack, Bamba, delivered to us by the team on trips to the west coast.
The Kaltura difference
Video consumption is here to stay, fueled by trends like increased broadband availability, mobile device penetration, the rise of over-the-top streaming (OTT) and now remote work amidst COVID and beyond. It sits at the heart of digital transformation too, with organizations increasingly embracing solutions to better engage with customers and employees. It’s a global market, which includes on-demand, live, and real-time video experiences, worth approximately $50 billion.
Kaltura is rightly very proud to have created the first and only open-source video platform, which is now home to one of the world’s largest online video developer communities.
Its live and on-demand video SaaS solutions are offered like lego building blocks that enable organizations to do anything with video, to suit any end market and any use case. Its off-the-shelf products are also renowned for flexibility, modularity, ease of integration and accessibility.
Today, Kaltura’s solutions are deployed globally across thousands of enterprises, media companies, service providers and educational institutions that utilize video to teach, learn, communicate, collaborate and entertain. Its technology even helped power our very own 6th annual virtual CIO summit and massive conferences like Amazon’s Reinvent in 2020.
A bright future for Kaltura
While one never really knows if they’re building the kind of company that will meet society’s demands and ultimately go public, Kaltura had a clear goal dating 14 years back and was working extremely hard to get to this point. As they say, timing is everything, and it couldn’t be better for Kaltura. Video is having an incredible moment, and is going to be an increasingly prevalent part of everyone’s lives going forward.
We’re so proud of our partnership with Kaltura and are enjoying seeing Ron and the whole team gain much deserved recognition for the company they’ve built. With leading solutions available for the on-demand and live video markets and intentions of expanding into Video Experience Cloud with new media services, as well as new products and industry solutions, Kaltura doesn’t plan on slowing down any time soon. We believe the company is perfectly positioned to capitalize on future opportunities and look forward to witnessing its next stage of growth and beyond.
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