Overlay.tv launches retail video solution

Ottawa multimedia start-up Overlay.tv has launched a new service aimed at retailers called Overlay.tv For Retail.

The main focus at Overlay.tv is adding clickable links to online videos and the new service aims to bring this functionality to online retail e-commerce sites.

The new product provides a set of tools to make it easy for online retailers to, for example, embed a purchase link directly inside a video demonstrating a product for sale.

“There’s no doubt that video can increase sales,” says Rob Lane, CEO of Overlay.TV in a press release. “Retailers have been slow to capitalize on this trend, largely because of the technical issues that come along with video storing, streaming and integration into existing product catalogs and inventory systems. We’ve taken away the technical problems, and packaged it in a way that makes the process easy to manage and entirely focused on sales.”

Aside from just adding sales links to videos, Overlay.tv for Retail also provides tools for online community building. The platform also has a face-to-face video chat feature for sales and makes it easy for users to upload an

Ottawa’s Overlay.TV announced today that they have closed a second round financing of $4.6 million from existing investors Celtic House Venture Partners, Tech Capital Partners and EdgeStone Capital Partners. The financing will be used to continue monetization of user-generated content and fund its expansion into premium content and additional brand partnerships. 

“Video adoption continues to grow on the Internet, but unlike most standard platforms, Overlay.TV has something different to offer: a deeper engagement with a richer online video experience. This is what makes Overlay.TV such a promising platform to both our customers and our investors,” said Rob Lane, CEO of Overlay.TV. “We also understand that during these tough economic times, companies are looking for ways to optimize spending, and Overlay.TV has proven that we can deliver better results. This second round of financing validates our progression, and will allow us to continue to develop products that encourage consumers to interact with content and brands in new and exciting ways.”

Overlay.TV launched its first general release on September 4th after a six-month beta program and since then has announced deals with Nettwerk Music Group, Hollywood Records, KidzBop and Transcontinental Media. Earlier this month Techvibes reported on Overlay.TV’s Vocal Booth which allows fans to sing along with the Jonas Brothers karaoke style.

2008 has be a busy year for Overlay.TV – they were named to IDC’s 10 Canadian Web 2.0 Companies to Watch list in July and picked up a top Red Herring Award in September.

Hot on the heels of the launch of their new monetization system and announcement that they’re working with Nettwerk Records, Ottawa’s Overlay.TV has been honoured at the first annual Red Herring Top 50 Awards in Mont Tremblant as the top Canadian business.

Overlay.TV is an interactive media platform that gives video creators and viewers the power to add a layer of custom-designed, clickable content over any embeddable online video through a drag-and-drop interface.

Overlay.TV is working with Nettwerk Records to add richer content to music videos – hyperlinks to the artiest social networking sites, information about how/where the video was made or links to where viewers can purchase CD’s and swag. Look out for Nettwerk star Sarah McLaughlan to launch her first new video in years on a custom Overlay.TV player.

To support the launch, Overlay.TV will be sponsoring a weekly news show about the online video space, hosted by Canadian new media journalist Amber MacArthur, entitled “The Overview.” The first episode went live last week and takes viewers inside the online video space with what’s new in video news, production tips and interviews with video producers and a spotlight on the platform’s best content producers.