At Wowza Media Systems, a New Alliance With Clearhaven Partners Supports Continued Innovation
For more than a decade, Wowza Media Systems has been at the forefront of the live-streaming revolution. Since its early days as a bootstrapped startup, the company has broadened its streaming video solutions suite, positioning itself as a fierce competitor in the space.
Now the company is ready to reach the next level. That’s why they’ve decided to pursue a partnership with Clearhaven Partners, a software-focused private equity firm.
According to Wowza Media Systems VP of Marketing Evan Paul, the recently announced partnership comes at a critical point within the company’s growth journey and will strategically leverage both Wowza’s live-streaming prominence and Clearhaven’s business growth expertise.
“This partnership provides access to capital if we need it, but more importantly, it accelerates our strategy to become the partner our customers scale with for their live-streaming needs by helping us more rapidly build modern and complete streaming solutions,” Paul said.
Built In Colorado caught up with Paul to learn more about the company’s new alliance and how it will positively impact their product and culture.
What drove the company’s decision to partner with Clearhaven Partners?
After 14 years of being profitable, primarily self-funded and growing, it was time for us to accelerate innovation. Different eras and company lifecycle stages require different types of investors, and we’re thrilled to partner with Clearhaven Partners for a period of exciting growth. Clearhaven shares our vision for Wowza’s future and that of the streaming video industry overall, including a commitment to growing and enhancing our streaming media solution platform.
How will this partnership influence future product offerings?
Clearhaven’s investment is centered around accelerating the breadth and depth of solutions offered by Wowza Streaming Cloud. We have a robust product roadmap filled with valuable items for our customers, and we want to get those developed and delivered as quickly as possible. Ultimately, we want to provide the solutions our customers need to solve their business problems, and then partner with them to provide the scale required to grow their businesses.
We want to provide the solutions our customers need to solve their business problems, and then partner with them to provide the scale required to grow their businesses.”
How will this partnership shape the company culture?
Wowza is continuing to mature as a company, and our benefits and support for employees continue to grow. In fact, Built In Colorado named us a top 50 local company to watch this year based on our benefits. While our teams still retain a startup spirit, we are at a point where we have a great customer base and a group of employees aligned around a shared vision.
One of the key reasons Clearhaven chose to partner with us is due to our company culture. For over a decade, our CEO Dave Stubenvoll has ensured that the company grows profitably and employees receive excellent career advancement support, benefits and compensation for their work. Given the Clearhaven announcement and our overall progress, employees seem even more excited about the future. We’ve already extended our popular summer 2021 program, which means employees will still be treated to an extra company holiday each month if we continue to hit our monthly goals. We are also continuing to find other ways to reward our teams and celebrate successes together.
Wowza and Clearhaven’s partnership will take what was already a great company culture — one defined by accountability, boldness, passion and customer obsession — and further activate these values to deliver critical streaming solutions.
What excites you the most about the partnership with Clearhaven Partners, and what impact do you expect this partnership to have on the company’s future as a whole?
I’m most excited about Clearhaven’s expertise to help guide our strategy and operations so we can build the company to realize its full potential. We’ve already transitioned from being a Colorado-based startup to becoming a global leader in live media streaming, and we’re committed to achieving our brand purpose of “powering connections to engage your world.”