Phil Castle, The Business Times
A Grand Junction entrepreneur who’s developed video-editing software that combines powerful features with ease of operation has high hopes for bringing his product to an even bigger market through an arrangement with a mobile application company.
“I think they’re a great strategic partner,” said Bill Baird, founder and chief executive officer of Loopster.
KiwiTech announced an investment in Loopster, acquiring a share of ownership in the company and providing resources to add features to the software and expand the operation.
“We are pleased to be embarking on this partnership, which allows our team to work closely with Loopster as they build a market-leading video-editing software company, tapping into an exciting mobile opportunity,” Rakesh Gupta, CEO of KiwiTech, stated in a news release.
Baird has worked for more than three years to develop and improve software that enables users to upload and edit video footage and post that footage on Facebook, YouTube and other social media sites. He launched a website at www.Loopster.com about a year ago and made the software available to download as an application for iPads, iPhones and iPods earlier this year. He expects to offer an app for Android devices as well.
Baird said the arrangement constitutes the next step in the development of his company in leveraging the technological resources and business expertise of KiwiTech to further improve the product and gain greater exposure.
KiwiTech has developed more than 750 applications and other products for a variety of mobile devices.
Baird said Gupta founded a company called Aptara that became one of the largest digital publishing service companies in the world and was sold in 2012 for $144 million.
One of the first steps in the partnership with KiwiTech, Baird said, will be to revamp the Loopster website, offering a new look to go along with new features.
The Loopster application also will be integrated with Box.com to enable users to store videos with the online file sharing service, Baird said.
More than 20 million users rely on the site, he said.
The focus remains, though, on providing video-editing software with powerful features that create professional-looking videos, but also make the process simple and fun.
Loopster offers a four-track editor for videos and images, transitions, sounds and text. The software makes it easy to trim and combine clips; add music, sound effects or narration; and create text effects. Baird said he has a patent pending on what he describes as a “seamless” slow-motion feature that can be applied to any portion or portions of a video clip.
Now that the software is available as an application, people can use their mobile devices to shoot video and then edit and share the footage, he said.
While a growing number of people share video content on the Internet for fun, Loopster has developed a following in the real estate, education and sports markets, Baird said. Real estate professionals make videos of their listings to show to prospective buyers. Teachers and students use video to create classroom presentations and homework projects. Videos also offer a way to analyze athletic performance for teams and individuals.
In addition to other resources, Baird said the arrangement with KiwiTech also will help in developing revenue streams for Loopster.
While the software is available for use on the website and to download for free, Baird expects to starting charging fees once the website and software have been updated. Other fees could apply for video storage or additional features.
That evolution is typical for software, he said, in that services or products are offered for free to test a concept. Afterwards, a purchase or fee is required. “We wanted to prove our concept, and we’ve done it.”
Even with a fee, Loopster will be far less expensive than other video-editing software that costs hundreds or even thousands of dollars, Baird said. “I think we’re going to be very competitive in that space.”