The following is a transcript of the recent Reuters UK interview with blinkx‘s CEO, Suranga Chadratillake, on its breakout success with soaring public shares, and growing plans with its new capital.
Reuters: The online video company blinkx is making a strong debut on London’s alternative investment market after announcing a placement price of 45 pence per share, giving the newly demerged company – [demerging from the British search software specialist Autonomy Corp] – a market capitalization of 125 million pounds ($247 million). The oversubscribed shares were trading at close to 63 pence per share at last glance. To talk about the decision to float, and what lays ahead, I’m joined by the CEO of blinkx, Suranga Chadratillake. First of all, tell us how it feels to debut as the boss of a publicly listed, stand-alone company?
blinkx: It’s absolutely exciting. Obviously, we been working very hard over the last few years and building a great business, and its great to take it to this next step.
Reuters: What will this flotation help you accomplish?
blinkx: It will help us accomplish a lot of things. First of all, the fact that we’ve been able to grow significant momentum in growing the index to where we are now – as the single largest video search engine on the web. Going forward, this allows us to do more of that, but do it on a bigger scale. This market we’re playing in is one that’s very, very large and growing very, very fast; and we have to grow our team and stay with that market.
Reuters: How are you fairing in your mission to become the “remote control” of video on the Web?
blinkx: I think we’re absolutely getting there. Online television is at the stage where we’re literally seeing an avalanche of content. We were at 7 million hours of content a couple of months ago. Today, we’re at almost 13 million hours of content. You can see how fast its growing.
Reuters: A few months ago… you said the future of online content was mass proliferation. Is that what its still looking like?
blinkx: Yes, it absolutely is. I think the key thing there is looking at the type of content that’s coming online. Until recently, the majority of online content was small, scrappy, amateur stuff – which was interesting and fun in lots of ways, but not really television. What we’ve seen over the last 6 months is the acceleration of actual TV content online. That’s really exciting… but to really make use of it, to really navigate it – you need remote control. That’s what Blinkx hopes to be.