Case Study

How an Indian Woman, Anjali Sud, made Vimeo a $7Billion Company?

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Vimeo Story and Learning from Their Mistakes

Vimeo, which was called a cool cousin of Youtube and at some point of time competing with OTT platforms like Netflix and Amazon Prime, how separated itself from others and got a successful IPO on the 25th of May 2021.

What is the real story of Vimeo and the learning that we can implement in our venture? We will get to know in this article.



Usually, Vimeo was known as a small but expensive cool cousin of Youtube 

But do you know Vimeo was started even before Youtube? Youtube was started on the 14th of February 2005 on the other hand Vimeo was started in November 2004.

There was a company named Connected Ventures and they had a website named Collegehumor.

At that time they used to get decent views. Once they posted a Saturday Night Live clip that attracted so many people.

After this, 2 Programmer of Connected Venture Where you could post a short video and they included a feature to tag your friend as well at that time.

Vimeo Acquisition By IAC

At that time Vimeo’s growth was not that good but Collegehumor was growing at full pace. After one year IAC acquired the Connected Venture and along with that IAC got the Vimeo for free.

Vimeo Competition With Youtube.

In October 2006 Google acquired Youtube for $1.65 Billion and after that Google integrated Youtube with its Ad Network. After this Youtube started growing at a rapid pace.

Here IAC thought of monetizing Vimeo in the same way as Google did with Youtube.

IAC started focusing on Vimeo and it became one of the first video content sites that used to provide High Definition content to its users.

Youtube is a platform where we can upload our videos for free and Google used to earn money through Youtube Ad revenue and Vimeo was working on its product, they created Better Tools for content creators.

To differentiate itself Vimeo didn’t include ads on their site instead made it a premium platform where you have to pay monthly fees to use it.

But only one feature can not help you to stand out, the same thing happened with Vimeo and the same thing happened with Vimeo.

Vimeo started disappearing from the mind of users and Youtube was continuously growing.

Vimeo as an OTT Platform

In 2015-16, they decided to use a new strategy. 

At that time Netflix and Prime Video were in trend so IAC thought of collaborating with the filmmakers of its platform and create an OTT platform.

But soon they realized it is not their cup of tea because other companies are already far ahead and they have the money to invest billions of dollars on original programming.

Restructuring of Vision and Mission of Vimeo by Anjali Sud

Anjali Sud, CEO of Vimeo

Now the role of Anjali Sud came into play.

Anjali joined Vimeo in 2004 as a Head of Global Marketing and then she became the General Manager of Vimeo Core Creators Team.

She worked on

  • Hosting
  • Distribution and
  • Monetization

Of Vimeo.

She launched Vimeo Business as well and worked on product features like 360 video support, collaboration, and review tools.

Previously they were focusing on creating an alternative to Youtube but soon Anjali noticed everyone wants to get into the business of Content Distribution like Youtube for free and Netflix under, paid version. 

But there was a gap there was no one to help creators.

Like GoDaddy revolutionized websites similarly Vimeo will do a similar thing for videos, because it was about to become a huge market segment.

Although Anjali Sud was a general manager, most of the senior managers were resigning from the company because of poor performance took this initiative and convinced the people on senior leadership to execute the plans.

They provided her with a time period of 1 year.

Also Read: 7 Schemes By Goveernment of India for Startups

She became CEO in 2017 and changed the entire vision and mission of the company.

She gave a direction to Vimeo to focus again on creators like Vimeo used to do in the beginning. Previously they were trying to become a Media Company but now they will become a Tech Company.

Tools for Creators

So now whether you are a fortune 500 company or a small business all the tools required to create a video will be available on Vimeo.

Either for

  • Filming
  • Editing
  • Production
  • Sharing

Vimeo started building all the tools required for the above-mentioned services.

Acquisition By Vimeo

Vimeo paced up its acquisition process as well, like in 2017 it acquired ‘Live Stream’ so that they won’t miss this growing segment of live streaming.

In 2019, they acquired Magisto that makes it easy to edit videos using AI.

Now they have so many products like 

  • Video Player where you can customize the color of your video player
  • Video Library where you can store your videos
  • Live Streaming
  • Screen Recorder
  • Privacy Control
  • Collaboration Tools that help you to directly publish your videos on Linkedin, Youtube, and Facebook
  • Distribution Tools
  • Marketing Tools
  • Monetization Tools

You can get Detailed Analytics, Hosting, Management.

Now you can also buy stock images of creators on Vimeo and can hire Video Editors as well.

If you want to create your content and need any help Vimeo is here to help with all the back-end process.

So if you want to build a business of Live streaming, OTT, or Education content, Vimeo can help you in this.

Vimeo’s growth was really appreciable after making all these strategic moves.

Now IAC has made Vimeo a separate entity and this year on the 25th of May, Vimeo got its successful IPO as well.

No one could have bet on the success of Vimeo a few years back and now we can see the growth of Vimeo.

This all happened because of strategic management by Anjali Sud.


  1. Never Forget your vision: when Vimeo started they were focused on content creators, they deviated from their line because of competitive pressure but they got success after focusing on their real vision again.
  2. Positioning Your Brand is Very Important: They used to create premium creators tools initially as well and was an ad-free platform but the Positioning of their Brand was not good. At one point in time, Vimeo was competing with Youtube and Facebook, but later on, they collaborated with them.
  3. Accept Your Down-Side and Improve: Like they tried creating a Live stream software but because they were not good at it, they acquired Live Stream.
  4. Never Lose Hope and always try to Improve: Anjali Sud could have easily got into a senior leadership role of any other company but because she had the belief in Vimeo, she tried her best to make it a successful venture.

Also Read: Business Strategy of World’s largest Vaccine Manufacturer

Hey I am Vaibhav, a CA student and a startup enthusiast who write about startups and on financial topics

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