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AOL Demands More Video

The video-on-demand business is starting to look as hot as the search industry these days, with more big players push into the growing space. Today, America Online made the space a little bigger when it announced its acquisition of video search company Truveo.

Financial terms were not disclosed but AOL spokesman Nicholas Graham told internetnews.com that the all-cash deal was the largest acquisition AOL has made since paying $435 million for interactive marketing company Advertising.com.

AOL's wanted Truveo because of its Visual Crawling technology, which has the ability to automatically find video files and related information on complex, dynamic Web pages.

Truveo's technology continually crawls video content sites on the Web in real time to provide breaking news, sports, and entertainment video, according to AOL.

"Quality trumps quantity in Web video search experience," Graham said, referring to the constant crawl of technology developed by Truveo.

It will be integrated within AOL's existing service in the coming months to help it become a "one-stop-shop" outlet, according to AOL.

"The next few years will see a dramatic increase in the amount of video available on the Web," Tim Tuttle, CEO and co-founder of Truveo, said in a statement.

Tuttle also said Truveo has spent the past two years assembling a "world-class team" charged with developing technology capable of finding and indexing this vast amount of Web video.

Burlingame, Calif.-based Truveo's corporate headquarters will remain in California, and its 12-member staff will be integrated with AOL's existing video and search teams.

In the past year AOL has expanded its consumer video and search offerings with the launch of its Video on Demand destination on AOL.com to the broadcast online of the "Live 8" concerts.

The company has also landed big content and original programming deals, including In2TV with Warner Brothers; the AOL-Telepictures new, on-demand entertainment news network -- TMZ.com; and a partnership with Web video distribution pioneer Brightcove.

"The addition of Truveo's video search technology, video assets, and experienced talent complements the overall video experience on AOL and takes it to new heights," Jonathan F. Miller, chairman and CEO of AOL, said in a statement.

Truveo was AOL's fifth announced corporate acquisition of 2005 following the acquisitions of Music Now, Weblogs, Xdrive and Wildseed.