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Deal Radar 2008: LifeSize

Posted on Thursday, Sep 4th 2008

High definition (HD) videoconferencing and communications developer LifeSize was founded in 2003. The company is headquartered in Austin, Texas with subsidiaries in the Americas, EMEA, and APAC. The company provides high quality communication solutions for large enterprises, academia and mid-market enterprises.

The company’s true value point is its pricing. While other videoconferencing solutions can cost up to $20,000 per site, LifeSize’s solution starts at $5,000 per site. Its videoconferencing system comprises a codec, a tilt and zoom camera, a disc-shaped LifeSize Phone, a remote control and cables to connect with the display. While users can connect to four remote sites using LifeSize, using the optional external bridge will allow them to connect to as many as 24 remote sites. The videoconferencing system supports video bandwidth from 128Kbps to 5Mbps. It provides high definition resolution (1280 by 720 at 30 frames per second) at 1Mbps, standard DVD quality at 512Kbps and cable television quality at 384Kbps.

The system is easy to set up and lives up to the company’s claim of being plug-and-play. Crisp video quality and good voice quality make the solution good value for money.

Apart from video solutions, the company also provides audio and infrastructure solutions, products for managing software, and accessories such as the LifeSize camera and LifeSize MicPod. Canon, Barclays Capital, BP, Accenture, YMCA and Duke University are some of its high-profile customers, and the company is represented in more than 30 countries worldwide.

In June 2008, LifeSize announced a distribution agreement with Beijing Founder Century Information System Co., Ltd to offer its HD video products to Chinese industries and enterprises.

The company achieved record revenues in 2007, and its annual sales revenue nearly tripled y-o-y. It is also lavishly funded with $81 million. LifeSize raised $18.5 million in a Series A from Austin Ventures, Norwest Venture Partners, Redpoint Ventures and Sutter Hill; $20 million in a Series B from the same investors; $17.5 million in a Series C from Pinnacle Ventures and the insiders; and $25 million in a Series D from Lehman Brothers Venture Partners and insiders.

Be it rising fuel prices, the need to go green, or the need to eliminate the hassle of business trips, video conferencing is an option that all businesses should seriously consider. We have previously covered Telanetix and Dimdim as promising technologies to kill gratuitous travel altogether.

Related Reading:

*Cisco and Competition; Cisco has been a huge beneficiary of video conferencing.
*Seven Tech Stocks For Long-Term Hold featuring Polycom, a leader in video conferencing and Telepresence.
*More Consolidation in Optical Components; Fiber Optics is the underlying technology that makes fast, high-resolution video transmission possible.

This segment is a part in the series : Deal Radar 2008


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