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Watching Ooyala video on an iPad

If you’ve been by the websites of big names like ESPN, Rolling Stone or Victoria’s Secret (not guilty) then you’ve probably watched video powered by Ooyala’s white label service. Today the company is rolling out a new set of tools that personalizes that experience for each user, an update the company says has boosted engagement four fold among its beta testers.

“Typically you get to the end of video on a publisher’s site and what happens? A black box. With Ooyala’s new discovery tools, publishers can serve up a series of videos that are tailored to each viewers taste,” said Ooyala CTO Sean Knapp during a visit to VentureBeat’s offices yesterday. “We have a huge data set, 200 million viewers, to learn about what people like. But unlike a platform like YouTube, we only serve up the next video from a specific publisher.”

Founded by a group of ex-Googlers and based just down the road in Mountain View, Ooyala doesn’t compete head on with YouTube, because it doesn’t deal in user-generated content. It focuses on powering video for premium clients who want to be able to control all the details of the experience and get a ton of data back in return. Ooyala is hoping to ride the big wave of growth in digital video.

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