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Vevo Views Rise by a Third as It Expands Mobile Access

Sept. 9 (Bloomberg) -- Vevo LLC, the online music-video service, said its viewership jumped by a third as it expands beyond Google Inc.’s YouTube with applications for mobile devices and web-connected-televisions.

Vevo had 1.58 billion worldwide viewers in the second quarter ended in June, compared with 1.17 billion a year earlier, the New York-based company said in an e-mailed statement today. Half of Vevo’s audience now comes from smartphones, tablet computers and Web-connected set-top TV boxes such as Roku.

The company, controlled by Vivendi SA’s Universal Music and Sony Corp., started a 24-hour music network for U.S. and Canadian viewers in March, accessible through its website and apps for Apple Inc.’s iPad and iPhone and devices running Google’s Android software. It plans to expand the service to pay-TV systems to increase advertising sales and create new revenue from subscriber fees.

“We’re seeing a lot of growth on our platforms outside of YouTube,” Chief Executive Officer Rio Caraeff said in a phone interview. “Our strategy is to give viewers videos wherever they are -- and not force them to watch on YouTube.”

Vevo, founded in 2009, started out distributing videos on YouTube in exchange for a portion of the ad revenue generated. Its service now shows about 122 million music videos daily worldwide, according to the statement. In June, it streamed 4 billion videos, compared with 3 billion in the same month a year earlier.

The company remains in discussions with pay-TV services to carry its channel, Caraeff said. Such a service would put Vevo in direct competition with Viacom Inc.’s MTV and VH1 channels.

Vevo is seeking to raise money from investors, including Guggenheim Partners LLC, people with knowledge of the process said earlier this year. It reached a new distribution deal with YouTube in July that included Google making a $50 million investment in the service.

Vevo’s service is available overseas in Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, Ireland, Italy, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Poland, Spain and the U.K.

To contact the reporter on this story: Andy Fixmer in Los Angeles at afixmer@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Anthony Palazzo at apalazzo@bloomberg.net

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