CNN Shutters Casey Neistat's Video Company Beme, Which It Bought 14 Months Ago For $25 Million


In late November 2016, CNN purchased YouTube star Casey Neistat's video-sharing app Beme for $25 million. The news network purchased the app in a bid to harness Neistat's (at the time) 6 million subscribers, with the hopes of turning the company into an independently operated daily online news show and a core part of CNN's offerings that would appeal to a younger demographic. Today, CNN has shut down Beme because Neistat was unable to figure out a viable strategy due to creative differences and sluggish process. He will be departing from CNN. The Verge reports: "I couldn't find answers. I would sort of disappear, and I would hide, and I would make YouTube videos for my channel because at least I would be able to yield something," Neistat told Buzzfeed News. "I don't think I'm giving CNN what I want to give them, and I don't think they're getting value from me." When CNN bought Beme, it said Neistat's company would focus on "timely and topical video and empowering content creators to use technology to find their voice." Beme currently employs 22 people, and CNN said it would re-employ most of the team, though some would lose their jobs. CNN plans to continue developing tech products developed by Beme, including an unreleased live-news app called Wire.

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