TV and video social network TIOTI (Tape It Off the Internet), which has had a rocky ride this last two years, has been acquired by Vizimo, a NorthStar-backed startup with similar aims. Vizimo says it plans to use TIOTI as a shop window in which to pioneer, demonstrate and test new functionality and tools that tie together TV, the web and, increasingly, mobile devices. In other words, TIOTI has the existing community of TV-heads they needed.
TIOTI launched in Autumn 2007, but was in a long private beta since 2006. It closed a $1.5m funding with Pond Ventures in Oct 2007. Co-founders Marc Colando and Paul Cleghorn split up in early 2008, with Cleghorn taking the startup forward. Since then we haven’t heard much from it for a while, in part because Cleghorn had a prolonged illness but happily recovered.
All through this time, Vizimo has been developing a system that integrates the web, mobile web and TV, allowing users to discover new shows, plan viewing, share recommendations with friends and set personal video recorders remotely – a vision very close to TIOTIs. Vizimo’s product is currently in beta but the company has secured a €890k funding round from NorthStar Equity Investors and a syndicate of private investors. NorthStar Equity Investors is one of a number of public sector backed investment companies stimulating high-tech economic development in the North of England.