Xperi Appoints Keith Jones CFO of Adeia IP Business

Xperi Holding Corp., corporate owner of TiVo, has appointed Keith Jones CFO of Adeia, its intellectual property business.

Jones will join the company Aug. 8 and will become CFO of Adeia effective upon the separation of the company’s IP and product businesses later this fall.

Jones joins Adeia from Rambus, a technology company that develops and licenses chip interface technologies, where he served in several key finance roles since 2018, and most recently as Interim CFO.

“Keith is a proven leader and a great addition to the executive team at Adeia” Paul Davis, president of Adeia, said in a statement. “As Adeia becomes a separate publicly traded company, Keith’s expertise in the IP licensing businesses and his public company experience are the perfect strategic fit for our organization.” 

“As Adeia nears separation, I am honored to lead as CFO and am particularly excited to work with the talented team at Adeia to continue to drive its IP leadership position in the market,” Jones said in a statement.

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Jones joined Rambus in 2018 and served as the chief accounting officer, corporate controller and VP of finance before becoming interim CFO. Prior to joining Rambus, he served as the worldwide corporate controller, VP of finance and the principal accounting officer at ShoreTel before its acquisition by Mitel Networks Corp. Before that, he served as the CFO and VP of finance at PDF Solutions. Jones has also held senior leadership roles at other technology companies, including Interwoven and e-Time Capital. He began his career at Deloitte.

Xperi Acquires Norway’s Vewd Software for Pending TV-Based Operating System

Xperi Corp., corporate owner of TiVo, July 5 announced it has acquired Norway’s Vewd Software Holdings for $109 million through a mixture of cash and debt.

Vewd is a global provider of over-the-top video and hybrid TV solutions that ship in more than 30 million connected-TV devices annually. The transaction gives Xperi access to an installed European footprint of approximately 15 million devices that can be enabled for monetization, including activation of TiVo+, a free ad-supported TV streaming service.

As part of the acquisition, Xperi will add approximately 275 Vewd employees, including CEO Aneesh Rajaram, who, along with other senior management, will continues to manage the subsidiary’s operations.

Founded in 2002 with main offices in Norway, Sweden, Taiwan and Poland, Vewd is an independent OTT software provider for smart-TV makers, connected-car and video-over-broadband operators. Over 450 million connected-TV devices have shipped with Vewd Smart TV Solutions from customers that include Amazon, Commscope, Hisense, Nintendo, Sagemcom, Skyworth, Sony, Swisscom, TCL, TPV Phillips and Vestel.

“Vewd’s global reach and expertise in providing support to content owners, TV OEMs, and SoC partners, is tremendously valuable and further paves the way for additional monetization opportunities as we expand our global footprint of streaming devices,” Jon Kirchner, CEO of Xperi, said in a statement.

Kirchner said the deal strengthens Xperi’s growth outlook as it prepares to separate its IP and product businesses this fall.

“We expect incremental revenue of $10 million in the second half of this year, followed by substantially higher revenue and a positive [pre-tax earnings] contribution in 2023,” he said.

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DEG Expo on Feb. 25 to Focus on ‘Maturing D2C Landscape’

Josh Reader, president of Distribution and Development at AMC Networks, will be a featured speaker for DEG: The Digital Entertainment Group’s next DEG Expo, set for Feb. 25 at 10:30 a.m. PT. Reader will chat with Looper Insights CEO Lucas Bertrand about marketplace dynamics for targeted direct-to-consumer services in 2021 and beyond.

The topic of the Feb. 25 DEG Expo is “The Maturing D2C Landscape,” with a particular focus on the targeted services landscape and the role connected devices play in the consumer experience. The program was developed with DEG’s D2C Alliance Council working group, which represents the global direct-to-consumer entertainment industry and supports its members to help create a robust marketplace to lead the new era of content consumption.

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In addition to the Reader-Bertrand chat, the Feb. 25 DEG Expo also will present a panel discussion on the connected device experience, with Susan Agliata, director of Business Development, OTT Partnerships at Samsung; Ben Maughan, VP of New Ventures and Strategic Business Development for TiVo (Xperi); and John Buffone, executive director and industry analyst, Connected Intelligence, with The NPD Group. Other speakers include Kevin Westcott, vice chairman and National TMT Leader, Deloitte, who will present research on subscription churn; Andrea Downing, co-president, PBS Distribution; and DEG president and CEO Amy Jo Smith.

DEG launched the DEG Expo series last year to provide its members and the industry with education and community building opportunities through curated virtual events offering diverse perspectives on topics relevant to the digital media industry.

To learn more about joining the D2C Alliance or how to participate in this week’s D2C Expo, please contact Shannon Gregory at Shannon@degonline.orgRegister for the DEG Expo: The Maturing D2C Landscape here. See the full agenda here.

TiVo Reveals New Management Structure, Including Former Warner Bros. Executive Darcy Antonellis as Board Member

Last December DVR pioneer TiVo and Xperi merged in a $3 billion deal to focus on licensing each other’s IP technology throughout the consumer electronics ecosystem.

Xperi June 15 announced its new senior leadership team following the completion of the merger, led by Xperi CEO Jon Kirchner; CFO Robert Andersen; Samir Armaly, president of IP Licensing; Petronel Bigioi, CTO of product; Paul Davis, chief legal officer and corporate secretary; Kris Graves, chief human resources officer; Michael Hawkey, GM of TiVo; Matt Milne, chief revenue officer; John Pernin, chief strategy and corporate development officer; Geir Skaaden, chief products and services officer; Steve Teig, CEO of Perceive, and advisor to the office of the CTO; and Murali Dharan, president and COO of Perceive.

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Darcy Antonellis

Joining the company’s new board of directors is former Warner Bros. CTO Darcy Antonellis, division president of Amdocs Media and CEO of Vubiquity, the media/entertainment distribution technology and services provider acquired by Amdocs in 2018. She has served on Xperi’s board since December 2018.

Also joining the board is Raghavendra Rau, interim president/CEO of TiVo from July 2018 to May 2019. He served as a member of TiVo’s board beginning May 2015 and as vice chairman beginning June 2019.

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In addition, Xperi made changes within its product and IP licensing business. The coveted segment — which includes more than 11,000 patents and applications in digital media, entertainment, advertising, automotive and semiconductors, many with recurring subscriber-based revenue — will be headed by Armaly, who has been involved with the business for 25 years, including in various executive roles at Gemstar — TV Guide, Rovi, and most recently TiVo.

Armaly was involved in the development of the company’s current media licensing business in the early 2000s, and under his leadership established it among the industry leaders, generating billions of dollars in revenue and profits for the company.

“Samir’s demonstrated track record in building IP businesses as well as his expertise and familiarity with our business, customers and licensing platform will be an important asset for our IP business going forward and ultimately upon its separation from the product business,” CEO Kirchner said in a statement.

Xperi Repositioning DTS Brand, Adding Imaging Tech

On the eve of CES Jan. 7-10, Xperi announced that its FotoNation imaging technology will be offered under the DTS brand along with its audio solutions.

“DTS will now move forward under a single premium brand inclusive of audio, imaging and sensing solutions,” according to an Xperi press release.

“Building upon DTS’s foundation of innovation in audio, our brand repositioning reflects our view that consumers will delight and engage in even more immersive and intuitive ways with their favorite content as we bring more integrated and advanced imaging and sensing technology to optimize content presentation and device playback,” said Kevin Doohan, Xperi’s chief marketing officer. “We are strategically pushing the DTS brand beyond the outstanding sound solutions customers and consumers have always known it to stand for, while integrating FotoNation’s trusted innovative technology and solutions under the redefined DTS brand.”

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At CES, Xperi will demonstrate:

  • Imax Enhanced, the premium home entertainment certification and licensing program from Imax and DTS available on four streaming platforms in seven countries worldwide and 17 device manufacturers;
  • DTS:X TV, a comprehensive immersive audio solution for televisions supporting decode, playback, and transcode of DTS:X bitstreams with full backward compatibility for streaming and disc-based DTS bitstreams;
  • DTS Virtual:X, which creates an immersive home theater experience using only a sound bar, TV speakers, or through speakers connected to an A/V receiver;
  • DTS Play-Fi, which brings wireless audio features such as surround sound, whole-home TV audio streaming, multi-room music, and app-based wireless headphone support to the entertainment hub of every room; and
  • DTS:XPro, an advanced audio decoder solution that brings greater spatial resolution to premium home cinema systems with support for up to 30.2 channels of audio in nearly any practical speaker layout.

 

TiVo Merging With Xperi in $3 Billion Transaction

DVR pioneer TiVo has shelved plans to separate its legacy set-top hardware business from software licensing and is merging with Xperi, a marketer of audio technology in an all stock deal worth about $3 billion.

The company will operate under the Xperi corporate name while TiVo will continue to operate its brand name. Xperi CEO Jon Kirchner will be chief executive of the combined companies with CFO Robert Andersen assuming the same position. TiVo CEO Dave Shull, who took the position in May, will serve as a strategic advisor.

“This landmark combination brings together two highly complementary companies poised to set the industry standard for user experiences across the digital value chain,” Kirchner said in a statement.

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With more than 10,000 patents and applications between the two companies and minimal licensee overlap, the combined IP business will be one of the largest licensing companies in the world.

Together, the companies expect to benefit from a larger and stronger platform to drive growth, accelerate time-to-market, and improve IP licensing monetization and outcomes. The product business expects to pursue substantial cross-selling opportunities especially in its home and automotive markets.

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The new company had $1.09 billion in TiVo revenue and Xperi billings topped more than $250 million in operating cash flow on a pro forma basis for the twelve months ended Sept. 30, 2019.

The companies expect to achieve at least $50 million of annualized run-rate cost savings by year-end 2021 through the integration of their respective product and IP licensing businesses, the majority of which are expected within the first twelve months after closing. These cost savings are incremental to those that are expected as a result of TiVo’s ongoing cost-transformation plan.

“In a rapidly expanding and fragmenting digital universe, consumers want and need to be able to easily find and enjoy the content that matters to them,” Shull said.  “With Xperi’s annual licensing of more than 100 million connected TV units, and complementary relationships with major content providers, consumer electronics manufacturers, and automotive OEMs, our combined company will transform the home, car, and mobile entertainment experience for the consumer.”