Around May 13, New York based blog Jossip began running with a story that small video-blog/news site Wallstrip was being acquired by CBS. Information regarding the deal at the time was credible enough to suggest it was highly likely the rumors were dancing around truth, so I ran with the story here on Metue as well.
Now, a week and a half later, the New York Times has confirmed what many of us already knew: the deal did happen. While terms weren’t disclosed, CBS did announce the deal and said that Wallstrip would retain its identity. CBS will work with the creators of Wallstrip to develop Internet programs and information for mobile phones and portable devices.
The Wallstrip content will be added to the portfolio of materials being produced by CBS’s interactive unit which is actively pursuing an online strategy that includes original content and syndication to web properties including, AOL, YouTube, and likely, IPTV startup Joost which CBS recently invested in.
The announcement of the deal did not mention specifics regarding the price of the deal. (It was most likely several million dollars below the rumored price of $5m. With $600k in investment and virtually no revenue, it’s more likely the deal topped out at around $2m). Also notably missing in the confirmation of the deal was any information about the fate of Wallstrip’s video host: Lindsay Campbell.
When the first peeps about the deal were circulating almost two weeks ago, most were speculating that Lindsay was a major part of CBS’s interest in the site and purchase – and that she was only available with the program and not as an independent employee. Be interesting to see where she ends up. Based on the couple episodes of Wallstrip’s programming I’ve scene, she seems like she could have a successful career in front of the camera. Quoting what I wrote in the previous article on the Wallstrip rumor: "She [comes across as] well educated, credible and articulate, balanced with a style that feels hip, casual and light-hearted enough to appeal to younger audiences in Gen X and Gen Y."
As is often the case in deals involving private companies, especially when the news is still being closely held, there is much speculation regarding terms of a deal, and the finances of the company involved. In my first post on the rumor, before it was confirmed, I noted accurately that reports of Wallstrip having zero revenue were wrong. That’s been further confirmed in the blogs of some of Wallstrip’s investors (here and here). There’s been no information, nor is their likely to be any released, regarding what revenue Wallstrip did or did not have. Characterizing their revenue as “virtually none” was speculative based on the age of the company and the nature of their business. Whatever the actuals, whatever the ROI, I’m sure it’s an exciting time for all at Wallstrip. It’s easy to question deals but speculation takes nothing away from the check they’ve got in their hands for something they built.