Roku Looking to Raise $50M for Push into International Markets
Roku took its first tentative steps beyond the US by following Netflix into the UK and Ireland, and the company has also indicated that Canada is on the horizon for this year. The response must have been positive as the company is reportedly looking to raise $50 million dollars to make a deeper push into Europe and to begin moving into Asia. Assuming the company can raise the funds, Roku will be entering a potentially dangerous new phase in its business. There are huge opportunities for the companies that establish themselves as dominant providers of over-the-top streaming devices, a market that is only going to become more valuable as media companies turn to streaming as their primary distribution channel, but Roku faces some stiff competition. There are the myriad smaller companies such as Boxee and Xtreamer, but more importantly, there are the game console and smart TV manufacturers that are already tapped into the mainstream audience looking to cut companies like Roku out of the picture by building their own OTT infrastructure. I think Roku makes a great little device, but do they have what it takes to straddle multiple continents?
Internet TV box service Roku is prepared to take on a big and high-risk new investment to support its international ambitions.
It is aiming to raise up to $50 million by this summer to go to the UK, France, Germany and the Far East - more than the $32.5 million it had raised to date since 2008, the firm tells Reuters.