Paltalk Buys Back Shares from Softbank

Softbank Capital Partners has sold its shares in video chat community Paltalk back to the company. Softbank invested $6 million in Paltalk five years ago. No financial terms of the buyback were disclosed, except that the terms represented a profit for Softbank.

Paltalk, the leading real-time, video-based community with over four million active members, announced today that it has completed a buy back of its shares from investor Softbank Capital Partners, marking the successful conclusion of the venture capital firm’s investment and exit strategy. Paltalk is in the unique position of having achieved years of profitability, which enabled the company to buy back its shares from Softbank.

Softbank Capital Partners invested $6 million in Paltalk in April 2004. Paltalk operates on a subscription-based model that allowed it to quickly reach profitability later in 2004 and maintain profitability since then. The company’s success as a video chat community has stemmed from its patented technology, advanced video and IM technologies for consumers, a growing population of users, superior user administered chat rooms with highly advanced moderation tools and corporate and e-commerce offerings to help businesses modernize their communications.

“Paltalk is one of the very few companies that have managed to monetize communications on the Internet and maintain profitability, even through the downturn,” said Mike Perlis, Partner of Softbank Capital Partners. “They’ve seen steady growth since our initial investment. This buy back is a profitable ending to our investment in the company.”

Paltalk provides video and chat capabilities that can facilitate virtual face-to-face interactions between individuals and between groups. It is the only such provider that can support hundreds of thousands of users simultaneously, including thousands of people within a single chat room. It currently averages more than 90,000 simultaneous users on any given day and has four million members. Paltalk can be used by individuals for personal interactions and by corporations that need to address audiences in real-time or to enliven e-commerce efforts. Paltalk uses a subscription-based revenue model that has enabled consistent growth and profitability.

Paltalk has a history of innovation and a long track record of industry milestones, including:

— 9 issued patents including patents covering interactive applications
over hosted networks and group messaging servers
— First to combine voice and video into instant messaging
— First to create video groups
— Only company with the ability to scale for any size chat rooms (one-to-
one or thousands-to-thousands). No other company can facilitate up to 5,000
people in one live video chat room.
— First to host original socialcasting shows to allow audiences to
interact via video with celebrities, such William Shatner, Chevy Chase, Amy
Sedaris, Steven King, JoJo and Slash.
— Unmatched quality with comprehensive admin controls for a safe user
experience and sophisticated technology for superior video and audio.

“With our profitable history, we approached Softbank Capital Partners with the idea of a buyout because we strongly believe in the long term value of our company,” said Jason Katz, CEO of Paltalk. “2008 was our strongest year in the company’s 10-year history. Now with the proliferation of webcams and a shift in consumer behavior toward online video and social interactions, our momentum continues to grow.”

About Paltalk

Paltalk, is the premier provider of software and technology for real-time, rich media, interactive social networking. The Paltalk platform powers the largest collection of video based communities and continues to grow since it was launched in 1998. Paltalk now boasts millions of active members with nearly 100,000 people simultaneously chatting in rooms engaged in lively dialogues, meeting new friends, trading stock tips, singing karaoke, and attending family reunions. The Paltalk community is vibrant due to superior patented technology, high quality real time audio and video, and room environments supported by a range of free moderation tools.

In addition, Paltalk delivers original programming geared to the interests of the community. Paltalk Interactive events have hosted such entertainment celebrities as William Shatner and radio personalities Opie and Anthony, among others. Paltalk supports IM pals on AOL, Yahoo, and ICQ and is available as a free download.