Amazon Video Goes Self-Service

Amazon Video Direct supports multiple distribution business models
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Amazon Video is taking aim at a self-service model, as well as taking on outlets like YouTube, Vimeo and Vessel, with the debut of Amazon Video Direct, a platform that will enable creators and storytellers to make their content available to the e-commerce giant’s customers, including “tens of millions” of Prime members.

Amazon said AVD, will enable partners to distribute content in one of four ways: via Prime Video (with royalties earned based on minutes streamed);  as an add-on subscription via the company’s new Streaming Partners Program; through one-time rentals or purchases, or offer to all Amazon customers under an ad-supported model.

AVD’s launch partners include Conde Nast Entertainment, HowStuffWorks, Samuel Goldwyn Films, The Guardian, Mashable, Mattel, StyleHaul, Kin Community, Jash, Business Insider, Machinima, TYT Network, Baby Einstein, CJ Entertainment America, Xive TV, Synergetic Distribution, Kino Nation, Journeyman Pictures, and Pro Guitar Lessons.

Amazon also unveiled AVD Stars, a bonus program that gives video creators a share of $1 million per month to the top 100 titles included with Prime through Amazon Video Direct. That bonus is incremental to revenue driven from the various distribution business models, and all titles included with Prime are automatically eligible, said Amazon, which will make its first bonus distributions based on streaming activity starting on June 1.

Amazon, which recently launched a standalone streaming option for its SVOD service, said content delivered via AVD will be made available to all countries where it offers Amazon Video – the U.S., Germany, Austria, United Kingdom and Japan. In the early going, AVD will support several platforms, including Fire TV, multiple tablets (Fire, iOS and Android), various connected TVs, game consoles, Web browsers, and iOS and  Android smartphones.

“It’s an amazing time to be a content creator,” Jim Freeman, vice president of Amazon Video, said in a statement. “There are more options for distribution than ever before and with Amazon Video Direct, for the first time, there’s a self-service option for video providers to get their content into a premium streaming subscription service. We’re excited to make it even easier for content creators to find an audience, and for that audience to find great content.”