Shutterstock Just Bought Pond5 & Appointed New CEO Paul Hennessy

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It’s a big day when a big company buys another big company. And that’s what just happened in the stock media industry today: leading stock photo agency Shutterstock just announced the acquisition of Pond5, one of the world’s largest video-first marketplaces for filmmakers and creatives. 

With this purchase, Shutterstock is effectively expanding its footing in the royalty-free and editorial video markets through Pond5’s collections and archives. Pond5, on its part, can offer additional revenue streams for its contributor base, as their content will now be integrated into Shutterstock’s services including their workflow solutions. 

In other news, Shutterstock also announced the appointment of their new CEO, Paul Hennessy, today. Mr. Hennessy comes from serving on the Shutterstock board for several years and is set to lead the company into its next phase of growth and transformation.

Read on for more details!

Shutterstock and Pond5 – The Transaction

Per the announcement today, Shutterstock bought Pond5 for $210 million in cash payment and expects this acquisition to solidify its position as a premium provider for royalty-free and especially editorial video. 

The goal of this move is to integrate Pond5’s comprehensive library of royalty-free and editorial content (video, music, and sound effects) into Shutterstock’s offer, including their multiple workflow solutions, such as Shutterstock Studios –the agency's complete content production service– where creatives will be able to access Pond5 clips to use in short and long-form content, for example. 

Additionally, they will also expand their business as Pond5’s customer base comes with big brand names like Netflix, Disney, and NBC as well as many small and medium-sized production studios and freelance creatives.  

For Pond5’s contributors, this opens a new business opportunity as their work will be now exposed to Shutterstock’s extensive customer base all over the world. 

Why Pond5 – A Leading Stock Video Provider

There are many reasons for this strategic purchase from Shutterstock, as Pond5 has been at top of the game when it comes to video-first services for creatives. 

Pond5 Logo

Launched in 2006, this agency has always focused on stock video, with complimentary offers such as stock music and sound effects. For more details, check our Pond5 review

To date, Pond5 counts over 30 million video clips, 1.6 million music tracks, and 1.7 million sound effects assets, and has a network of over 115,000 active contributors across 180 countries, who upload as many as 2.5 new files every month. 

Pond5’s offer includes royalty-free content for commercial use and a large supply of editorial content, both fresh and archive, from high-profile partners like Reuters, PA Media, and British Movietone. 

All of these assets will now be available for Shutterstock’s global customers, in what will be one of the largest offers in premium video and editorial content in the world.

It seems that expanding the Shutterstock Editorial service is one of the core goals of this move, which will give Shutterstock clients immediate access to a larger pool of professional and high-end editorial content. 

If you find this news interesting, you may also want to check our full and updated Shutterstock statistics article with this and more news and numbers.

Shutterstock's New CEO Paul Hennessy

Paul Hennessy > Shutterstock Just Bought Pond5 & Appointed New CEO Paul Hennessy
Paul Hennessy, appointed CEO at Shutterstock

Another announcement made by Shutterstock today is the appointment of Paul Hennessy as the new Chief Executive Officer. His tenure in the position will start effectively on July 1st, 2022. Mr. Hennessy will succeed company founder and former CEO Jon Oringer, who is currently serving as Interim CEO.

Paul has over 20 years of experience in digital marketplaces and global leadership under his belt and has been a Shutterstock board member since 2015. Oringer described Hennessy as a data-driven, growth-focused leader with an inclination for disruption and innovation. Mr. Hennessy himself has said he is set to impulse Shutterstock's strategy of building and scaling a full-service creative platform with a focus on customer experience.

Will you use Pond5’s video clips through Shutterstock? And what do you think about their creative solutions strategy? Let us know!

Ivanna Attié

Ivanna Attié

I am Content Manager, Researcher, and Author in StockPhotoSecrets.com and Stock Photo Press and its many stock media-oriented publications. I am a passionate communicator with a love for visual imagery and an inexhaustible thirst for knowledge. Lucky enough to enter the wonderful world of stock photography working side-by-side with experienced experts, I am happy to share my research, insights, and advice about image licensing, stock photography offers, and the stock media industry with everyone in the creative community. My background is in Communication and Journalism, and I also love literature and performing arts.

2 Comments
  1. I like your write ups.
    I wonder if you thing a new player/start up can enter this stock photo industry and still make an impact with heavy players like Shutter & Getty Image?

    • Hi Yusuf,

      Thank you and that’s a very good question. I think the industry always has room for new players and as long as you have a solid plan and are willing to put in the effort and the investment, you have a shot. That said, there is more opportunity for niche agencies with a unique offer.
      As a matter of fact, our team leader and founder, Amos Struck, will be discussing precisely this topic and sharing his strategies for smaller companies to thrive in the stock photo industry, in the upcoming CEPIC 2022 Roundtable, if you have an interest in this and the possibility, I recommend that you attend! 🙂

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