from the June 2011 issue

Getty buys image copyright monitor PicScout for $20M

Getty Images has acquired PicScout, a leader in protecting the copyright of images on websites.

Getty is one of Israeli-based PicScout's main clients. Several websites in Israel listed the sales price at $20 million.

Getty Images said it will invest in PicScout's technology to improve and expand the protection of intellectual property. Getty said it would maintain the PicScout brand.

PicScout's applications based on the ImageIRC platform include ImageTracker and ImageExchange. Its ImageTracer monitors the use of images on the web for copyright protection.

With the rapid growth of social media and websites, it has become increasingly difficult for photographers and companies to protect the use of their images. In one example on PicScout's blog, a photographer said his self-portraits were taken from his Flickr account and used in more than 40 countries.

PicScout recently released new versions of ImageExchange for Safari and Chrome browsers .

In a blog post, PicScout co-founder Offir Gutelzon said that the company's R&D and operations teams will remain in Israel.

PicScout will remain as a brand, continuing to support a myriad of applications based on the ImageIRC platform, including ImageTracker and ImageExchange. The acquisition by Getty serves as an opportunity for PicScout to further expand and accelerate its offerings as it delivers against the promise of Every Image Gets Its Credit.

Over the past 15 years, Getty has made a number of acquisitions that have allowed the Seattle company to become one of the world's largest purveyors of digital images.

In April 2010, Getty acquired celebrity photo site Rex Features. In October 2008, Getty purchased Jupiter Images' online images unit for $96 million.

In July 2008, Getty was taken private in a $2.4 billion buyout by private equity firm Hellman & Friedman.

Reprinted from the Israel High-Tech & Investment Report June 2011

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