Finnish Streaming-Video Firm Establishes Beachhead in US

After four weeks in the United States, Helsinki-based oplayo Inc. has signed up its first customer and established three strategic alliances.

The streaming media services provider, which opened an office in Vienna, VA, earlier this month, said yesterday that will begin a campaign later this summer incorporating oplayo's technology into banner ads and e-mail.

The three strategic partnerships are with Biznews24, which produces Web-based rich media content for large companies; Exile on Seventh, a San Francisco-based online ad agency and media buyer; and Vingage Corp., which produces a platform that allows video to be streamed over the Internet in all formats through a single video file.

Oplayo develops plug-in-free, Java-based streaming video technologies that can be played with any Web browser, eliminating the need for media player software. Its video technology can be used in banner ads, e-mail messages and on e-commerce Web sites.

The campaign, developed in conjunction with Exile on Seventh, is intended as a branding vehicle. It also is expected to drive traffic and leads to

"Oplayo enables us to advertise with eye-grabbing media that is fun, entertaining and is as effective in communicating the benefits of the brand as our TV commercials," said Clark Wood, vice president of marketing at the online automotive marketplace. He expects the campaign to help the company reach a larger audience.

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