Sonic Solutions announces DivX buy

June 3, 2010 | 10:34

Tags: #codec #compression #sonic #video #video-codec #video-compression #video-streaming #vp8 #webm

Companies: #divx #sonic-solutions

While Google's VP8-based WebM video codec might be getting all the attention at the moment, it's certainly not the only option out there - and with Sonic Solutions having just spent $323 million to acquire video compression specialist DivX it could have a fight on its hands.

Announced late yesterday, the deal will see Sonic pay $3.75 in cash and 0.514 of a share to DivX's shareholders in order to completely acquire the company - valuing DivX at around $323 million (around £221 million.)

It's clear that Sonic, a company which specialises in developing technologies for CD, DVD, and Blu-ray preparation, is hoping the acquisition - expected to complete by September, pending regulatory and shareholder approval - will allow it to compete better in the Internet content distribution market.

Sonic's chief executive officer Dave Habiger claims that "the combination of Sonic and DivX promises to be the foremost provider of platforms, tools, and technologies for the efficient delivery of premium video entertainment to virtually any type of consumer electronics device," while an equally excited Kevin Hell from DivX believes that "by combining our products, technologies, partnerships, and talented employees, we immediately create a complete end-to-end delivery platform for digital media."

The deal certainly appears to be a good one for both parties, and something which could not have been predicted ten years ago when DivX's impressive video compression technology was adopted by pirates to create near-DVD quality copies of films, making DivX something of an unpopular name in Hollywood.

Do you believe that the deal will produce something good, or has the day of DivX already been and gone - replaced with variable-bitrate codecs more suited to streaming content rather than merely downloading it? Share your thoughts over in the forums.
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