Irishman sells global digital media powerhouse Saffron Digital to Cinram for US$47m

5 Sep 2013

Saffron Digital CEO Jason Keane

Saffron Digital, a major digital media firm in London and Beverly Hills headed up by Irishman Jason Keane, has been sold to Toronto-based entertainment player Cinram for US$47m. Saffron Digital is a platform provider for over-the-top (OTT) content delivery and serves more than 30,000 movies to 100m devices, from smartphones to tablets and smart TVs every year.

Keane’s career in the last decade has traversed key players from Microsoft to Yahoo! and NBC Universal, where he drove core product strategy and devised 360-degree global digital strategies.

The Dublin native and University College Dublin graduate joined Saffron Digital in 2011 in London as chief operating officer.

With offices in Beverly Hills, California, and London, Saffron Digital provides the tools for OTT and Ultra Violet delivery of movies and content to devices.

Cinram is a service provider to the entertainment industry and one of the largest global manufacturers and distributors of Blu-rays, DVDs and CDs for motion picture studios, record labels and game publishers.

“Being part of such a successful international entertainment company like Cinram is a great move for Saffron Digital,” Keane said.

“It will enable us to significantly scale our existing digital business and build a unique premium content delivery platform that works seamlessly from physical through digital to the end user.

“Saffron Digital is a great fit within Cinram’s growing digital ecosystem and this acquisition will compliment both companies nicely, as well as the needs of our industry.”

Cinram, acquired by Najafi Companies earlier this year, also provides digital and creative services through its Los Angeles-based digital media agency, 1K Studios. 1K Studios is known for its award-winning work in digital book and app development, enhanced user experience and consumer engagement.

Saffron Digital complements the current portfolio companies of 1K Studios and Cinram by providing a complete physical-to-digital delivery platform.

“Saffron Digital is an ideal partner to add to our Cinram portfolio,” said Najafi Companies’ CEO Jahm Najafi. “Its cloud-based digital content delivery and usage is industry-leading and adds further depth to our entertainment-related investments and holdings.”

“Cinram’s acquisition of Saffron Digital will provide a truly aligned solution to consumer demand, enabling an easy transition for the consumer, from the stunning experience of Blu-ray to storing favourite movies, music and books in the cloud and accessing them from anywhere,” said Cinram CEO Steve Brown.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years