A Q&A with WeVideo founder and CEO Jostein Svendsen. The Sunnyvale, California–based company was founded in 2011 and recently raised $19.1 million in Series A funding. Investors include Crest Capital Ventures.
SUB: Please describe what WeVideo is, and the value proposition you bring to online video and video editing.
Svendsen: WeVideo is an online video editing platform enabling people to fast and easy produce broadcast quality video in on any device—personal computers, tablets and smartphones. You can think of us as Google Docs for video editing, empowering anyone to collaborate with friends, family and colleagues to easily create great videos and still have secure storage and easy access from the cloud.
SUB: Who are your target users?
Svendsen: Both consumers and businesses love our platform. Our customers include those with a passion for their sport; aspiring entertainers working to be discovered through online video; individuals, who are capturing the family journey from the birth of a baby to graduations to weddings; groups sharing memories of their trips, team sport moments, and causes; gamers commemorating their battles and wins; students using video for projects and activities; marketers finding new and innovative ways to tell their company and product story; training leaders looking for more effective tools for learning; online journalists who see video as a platform for multi-location collaboration and citizen journalism; and new digital and social media professionals who naturally get that video is the fastest growing media type of our time.
SUB: Who do you consider to be your competition?
Svendsen: WeVideo is the only company making video editing and collaboration accessible to everyone, anywhere, by leveraging the strengths of the cloud. While nobody offers a comparable service, traditional desktop editing software providers and some simple or automated online tools are our closest video editing competitors.
SUB: What differentiates WeVideo from the competition?
Svendsen: Compared to automated online tools, WeVideo gives complete creative freedom with robust, yet simple-to-use editing capabilities.
Compared to traditional desktop solutions, we are much more affordable, starting from our free, basic offering, to reasonably priced packages for users who need export quality and storage. Being cloud-based, WeVideo eliminates the need for high end computing resources, while providing the convenience of remote editing via any browser-based smartphone, tablet or computer.
Compared to both, WeVideo provides a unique social editing environment that simplifies the aggregation of video content, enabling friends and colleagues to jointly create and edit video stories.
SUB: When was the company founded and what were the first steps you took in establishing it?
Svendsen: WeVideo was founded in 2011 as a spin-off from Norwegian-based Creaza. Initially, we were privately funded by the founders. Like many successful serial entrepreneurs in digital media and the Internet, we sought out leading angel groups and venture funds about further funding.
SUB: What was the inspiration behind the idea for WeVideo? Was there an “aha” moment, or was the idea more gradual in developing?
Svendsen: It was clear to us from the beginning that we had a unique opportunity to bring down the barriers to video editing via the cloud, and be the first ever to enable social editing and video creation from anywhere, anytime.
SUB: What have the most significant obstacles been so far to building the company?
Svendsen: Time and money, I suppose—there were no significant technical hurdles as the cloud infrastructure was already in place. We launched remarkably quickly and are quickly expanding our offerings, gaining press exposure, and establishing relationships with the likes of YouTube, Disney, Google Drive, Getty/iStockphoto, and many others.
SUB: You just announced the closing of a $19.1 million funding round. How do you plan to use the funds?
Svendsen: The additional funding will help WeVideo to ramp up its integration development team, and position the company as a global leader in the online video editing space.
SUB: Do you plan to raise more funding in the near future?
Svendsen: We have no plans to raise additional funding at this time.
SUB: What are your goals for WeVideo over the next year or so?
Svendsen: We are looking forward to signing strategic partnerships for marketing and distribution and additional content offerings, growing our user base to millions of users. WeVideo will soon be available on more devices than any other video editing platform. We have a fantastic opportunity to become the most loved and widely used video editing software in the world.
WeVideo – www.wevideo.com