Barco Acquires X2O Media for $19 Million

KORTRIJK, BELGIUM and MONTREAL, QUEBEC—Monitor maker Barco is acquiring enterprise communication specialist X2O Media for a reported $19 million U.S.

In line with Barco’s strategy to move beyond display and projection technology, the vendor said this acquisition “expands the portfolio with a complete solution to deliver enhanced and cross-divisional content distribution and workflow, based on advanced networking and connectivity capabilities.”

X2O Media was established in 2006 as a spin-off from VertigoXmedia, a Montreal-based company in broadcast graphics automation. X2O’s platform enables the connection, management and delivery of real-time data through dynamic and interactive channels, “from any source to any screen,” Barco said.

Barco CEO Eric Van Zele said customers are looking for end-to-end visualization and cloud-based systems.

“X2O Media’s platform will play a crucial role in allowing Barco to tap into these new opportunities, while differentiating itself further from competition,” he said.

X2O’s software—functionally illustrated at right—establishes real-time, device-agnostic visual communications with a specific audience on HTML-5 technology. The software includes plug-ins, objects for almost any type of data-source, from local database-systems, over collaboration sites—SharePoint, Exchange, …—up to dynamic data feeds from social media or news sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. The technology can be deployed on premise or in the cloud through what’s described as an intuitive user interface.

The software is being used in across a range of industries and shows “a strong match with Barco’s target markets, including enterprise communications, corporate and education, retail and advertising, control rooms, broadcast and healthcare,” Barco said.

David Wilkins, president and CEO of X2O Media, said the nuptials with Barco give it a new international marketing network.

“Adding X2O Media’s application software and workflow focused capabilities, will allow both companies to go to the market with a more comprehensive offering,” he said. “At the moment, our market is limited to North America, but benefiting from Barco’s global network we will be able to grow our activities worldwide.”

X2O Media will be integrated in the Barco organization as a business venture, allowing it to continue the development of its platform technology, while leveraging its business growth from Barco’s worldwide sales and service presence. In addition, the X2O specific capabilities and technology will be integrated gradually in solutions for all of Barco’s markets.

X2O Media posted sales of C5 million (US$4.47 million in today’s rates) in 2013, employs about 40 people and was backed by Propulsion Ventures. The price of this acquisition is set to C21.