ADEXCHANGER: YouTube MCNs Grow Legs, But Can They Sustain Their Own Ecosystems?

YouTube multichannel networks (MCN) – and their influencers and fan bases – keep whetting investors’ appetites.


Media research firm Ampere Analysis values the entire MCN business at approximately $20 billion in a study of three years’ worth of MCN investments released this week.

German media giant ProSiebenSat.1 is the latest to jump in, acquiring on Wednesday a controlling stake in YouTube multichannel network Collective Digital Studio. ProSieben will merge Collective with its own MCN, Studio71, and put an additional $83 million into the combined entity. The investment values the global video network at about $240 million.

Other major MCN acquisitions – Disney/Maker Studios, valued close to $1 billion, Otter Media/Fullscreen and DreamWorks/Hearst and AwesomenessTV – point to rapid consolidation of YouTube’s channel business.

DreamWorks and Disney’s investments have produced handsome returns, with the value of those networks increasing 240% in 18 months.

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