YouTube could introduce a subscription service of its own

At the D:Dive Into Media conference Tuesday, YouTube (s GOOG) CEO Salar Kamangar gave his views on how the video marketplace is evolving both online and off. While much of the company’s efforts have been based on advertising — with some small portion of video-on-demand sales, Kamangar said his company could potentially create a service that could enable content providers to create their own subscription-based video offerings on the YouTube platform.
In laying out the current marketplace, Kamangar estimated that about 20 percent of all video revenues — both online and off — come from sales or rentals, with 40 percent coming from subscriptions and the final 40 percent coming from advertising. It’s his belief that the amount of ad spend will grow as a percentage compared to some of the other business models.
YouTube isn’t totally ruling out the possibility of launching subscription capabilities that content partners could leverage, however. Kamangar gave an example of being able to sign up for individual yoga channels, for instance. While he warned that it’s a bit premature and that YouTube doesn’t currently have a product to announce, it’s definitely something YouTube is thinking about. “We’re a media platform want to be biz model than media partners demand,” Kamangar said.
That comes as YouTube begins to rethink how it positions itself and as it is investing heavily in more than 100 channels of original programming. Kamangar said YouTube is making that investment as a way to catalyze something that’s going to happen and to make it happen more quickly. In that way, he compared YouTube’s funding of original channels with how Kleiner Perkins Caufield Byers is catalyzing iOS app investment with the iFund.
“What we’ve learned from our experience with YouTube is that you can’t predict what’s going to be big. We’re trying to place our bets far and wide,” Kamangar said.