Michael Eisner not doubting Veoh despite report

Veoh founder says Eisner expressed his pleasure with the company's progress by pouring more money into it.

LOS ANGELES--Michael Eisner wasn't miffed enough at Veoh to stop him from investing in the company once again.

Dmitry Shapiro, Veoh founder

Last week, the former Disney chairman took the stage at Digitas' "Newfront," a showcase of Web video for potential advertisers held in New York. Joining him was Veoh's founder Dmitry Shapiro.

According to Silicon Alley Insider, Eisner used the opportunity to chide Shapiro about when Veoh, a company that bills itself as a Web TV network, is going to pay off. Silicon Alley Insider called the exchange between the two men "uncomfortable."

On Tuesday, Shapiro was at the OnHollywood Conference and he said he was dumbfounded after reading the story. He and Eisner were joking around and that everyone in the audience understood that except Silicon Alley Insider. What should have tipped off the blog's reporter, according to Shapiro was when Eisner started picking fun at Veoh for posting an ad for a penis enlargement herb.

Shapiro said Eisner is pleased with Veoh's progress and was part of a $30 million funding round the company closed recently that included such other investors as Intel and Adobe Systems. This was Eisner's second investment into the company.

Maybe the important question is whether Eisner should be down on Veoh. In a sector where YouTube has devoured almost everything video on the Web, Veoh says it has 28 million unique visitors worldwide. They spent more than 100 minutes each month on the site. The company is able to keep them there so long because it offers long-form content and a recommendation search engine that helps people find the clips that appeals to them.

Veoh's goal is to attract the best videographers on the Web or the people Shapiro calls "the YouTube graduates."

But when can he start putting cash into Eisner's already deep pockets?

"We'll be profitable in 2009," Shapiro said.

 

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