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Tech tyro Clipchamp's founders sell to Microsoft to start 'new journey'


Brisbane tech company Clipchamp has been bought out by Microsoft, highlighting the spectacular growth in the city’s tech sector.


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The deal comes just weeks after Go1 became the state’s first tech unicorn (valued at $1 billion or more). 

While no dollar figures have been announced, the acquisition follows an announcement by Clipchamp in July that it had 17 million registered users on its platform and was providing a service to more than 390,000 companies. It has also received about $14 million in external funding in 2020 as it launched a push into the US markets.

Clipchamp, which has an in-browser video editing platform and has Steve Baxter on its board, only recently said it was in the middle of a boom.

Baxter described Clipchamp as “the Canva for video”. The company also had blue chip clients like Dell, Google and Deloitte.

“Clipchamp has had explosive growth, nearly tripling our team in the past year. We are acquiring two times more users on average than we did at the same time a year ago while also doubling the usage rate, meaning more users are creating video content than ever before,” chief executive Alexander Dreiling said.

For the first half of 2021, Clipchamp reported a 186 percent year-over-year increase in its exports.

And earlier this year, Clipchamp launched its own Windows app.

In a blog, Dreiling said the reason the company had accepted the Microsoft deal was because “founders go through different stages from incorporating a business, to hiring the first employees, raising several rounds of funding and eventually they will try to exit through an acquisition or going public. 

“And while an exit event is the end of a startup journey, it is also the beginning of a new journey. In our case that will be a journey under a Microsoft umbrella.

“Few companies in tech have the legacy and reach that Microsoft has. We all grew up with iconic Microsoft products and have been using them ever since. 

“Becoming part of Microsoft allows us to become part of a future legacy. Under no other scenario could our future look more exciting than what’s ahead of us now. 

“At Clipchamp we have always said that we’re not suffering from a lack of opportunity, there absolutely is an abundance of opportunity in video. We just need to figure out how to seize it. 

“Inside Microsoft we can approach seizing our opportunity in entirely new ways.

“There are so many people who have helped us on our journey: investors that invested in us when no one else would, employees that joined us when no one else knew us, journalists that wrote about us when no one else thought we were worth a story and partners in life that never stopped believing in us even when things got tough. 

“They say that a startup journey is like a rollercoaster, the high points feel so much better than elsewhere, and the low points feel so much worse. 

Corporate vice president for the Office Media Group at Microsoft Chris Pratley said he was ”bubbling over with excitement that Clipchamp will be joining Microsoft. 

“The Clipchamp team is a creative powerhouse dedicated to quality and great customer outcomes, and we welcome them wholeheartedly as kindred spirits. We will be doing incredible things together—more to come on that later.

“As a web app that uses the full power of your PC, Clipchamp is a natural fit to extend the cloud-powered productivity experiences in Microsoft 365 for individuals, families, schools, and businesses.’’

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