Magnify's acquisition of #Waywire was front page news in all the industry blogs, covered in both the New York Times and WSJ's, All Things D, and even in prime-time on Bloomberg Business News. But it was the banner headline in Tech Crunch that seemed to capture it all.
"Magnify Is Buying Waywire To Build A Consumer–Facing Video Curation Powerhouse" wrote TC reporter Ryan Lawler. "New York-based video startup Magnify is in the process of acquiring #Waywire, the company that Cory Booker founded, to build a consumer-facing business around the curation of videos online. Magnify has been building tools to enable others to collect and share videos on the web. The folks at Magnify believe that the time is right for consumers to begin curating videos in the same way they curate and pin articles and whatever else on sites like Pinterest."
And All Things D's Peter Kafka reported: "Waywire, the video startup best known for its association with politician Cory Booker, is being sold to Magnify, a Web video distributor. People familiar with Waywire's sale say that Magnify's plan is to continue operating Waywire.com, but to power the site using Magnify's technology."
Sarah Cain Miller of The New York Times wrote: "Magnify, Waywire's new home, has a partnership with AOL. Waywire and Magnify are each trying to curate online video, though Magnify sells its products to online publishers and ad networks, while Waywire aimed to be a consumer service."
Bloomberg Business landed the banner headline: "Video Curation is RED HOT!"
Upstart Business Journal's Alex Dalenberg wrote: "When Steve Rosenbaum says he wrote the book on content curation he's not exaggerating. The media entrepreneur and documentary filmmaker's 2011 treatise Curation Nation is a 304-page dive into all things curatorial on the Web. After much initial fanfare and celebrity investments from the likes of Oprah Winfrey, Google chairman Eric Schmidt and Lady Gaga's manager Troy Carter, Waywire started its life as a platform for original and user-generated video content for Millennials, but later pivoted to a curation-based "Pinterest for video" approach."
Rosenbaum says it's still too early to judge the year-old Waywire. For one thing, Magnify has paying customers, giving it the necessary runway to turn Waywire into a viable business. More importantly, Rosenbaum still sees a need for curated video.
"The secret of video is people don't actually want more, they actually want less," he said.
#Waywire will become the consumer-facing side of Magnify, doing much of the same thing it does now. Users will be able to get curated video channels, tailored to their interests. Waywire's co-founder Sarah Ross will also join the Magnify board.
But it was the almost 1000 word follow up piece in TechCrunch that seemed to sum it all up best: "In some ways, the matchup makes a lot of sense – both companies, after all, have the shared vision of empowering users to find, collect, and share videos with others. But in other ways, the tie-up of Waywire and Magnify shows a stark contrast in how the different companies hoped to achieve that vision.
Waywire came rushing out of the gate with a bold plan to convert some of the toughest users to reach – millennials – into content curators. And it promised to do so thanks to a charismatic founder, Silicon Valley funding, and deals with big-name publishers.
Magnify, meanwhile, has spent the last seven years slowly and steadily building its business, waiting for mass-market adoption of curation tools to truly take hold.
Meet the man who wants to turn Cory Booker's old startup into a winner
Update: Magnify Makes Waywire Acquisition Official, Talks With Us About The Future of Web
Cory Booker's Waywire sold to video startup Magnify
Magnify Acquires Waywire, Cory Booker-Backed Startup
Booting Up: Cory Booker Dumps Waywire on Magnify
Newark Mayor Cory Booker's online video startup, Waywire, reportedly sells to Magnify
Press Release – Marketwired
#Waywire.com video curation site to be acquired by Magnify.net