After the acquisition by Shutterstock, it was just a matter of time for Pond5 to announce the discontinuation of its partnership with Adobe Stock. This moment has come.
If you follow the news about the sites that provide creative stock assets, you probably saw the news about Shutterstock acquiring Pond5 back in May 2022. The deal valued at $210 million brought two large stock sites together. As Shutterstock continues its expansion with the earlier acquisitions of Bigstockphoto (stock image site) in 2009, PremiumBeat (royalty free music site) in 2015, Turbosquid (3D model marketplace) in 2020, Picmonkey (online photo editor) in 2021, it invited Pond5 to their family of brands in 2022.
Pond5 was founded in 2006 with a focus on stock footage. Ever since, Pond5 has built a massive library of stock videos (over 30M clips as of June 2022), thousands of stock music tracks and sound effects. Pond5 has always been known as a sizable video library, which was not too easy to navigate.
Among video makers, Pond5 has a good reputation as it’s one of the few stock video sites that allows contributors to set their own prices. Pond5 also pays 50% off each sale.
The little known fact is that Pond5 had the majority of its video inventory rented out to Adobe Stock. Adobe Stock was late to the game of building its own library of stock assets. To compete with Shutterstock, it had to find a partner with a large library. Pond5 was a perfect one: a smaller company with smaller marketing budgets. So Pond5 allowed Adobe to push footage to Adobe Stock via API connectors.
Now that Pond5 is part of the Shutterstock family of brands, the partnership with Adobe comes to an end. Adobe customers who licensed Pond5 videos on the iStock platform have 30 days, until the end of July 2022, to download the videos they purchased in the past. (Source of this info)
After August 1, 2022, those videos will not be available. This will be a major blow to Adobe Stock as their video library will be very slim, all of a sudden.
We think Adobe is now searching for a new video partner to take Pond5’s place. If you use the Adobe stock video library (we believe iStock is impacted too), this library will not be the same from August 1st onward.
Some websites mention that Shutterstock and Pond5 will make the biggest stock video library in the world by combining their videos. The number of 55M video clips to choose from also popped up.
We do not agree with this assessment entirely. Yes, Shutterstock is set to become the largest video library. But it’s not going to be 50M+ clips. If you are familiar with how stock videos make their way to the stock sites, you know that contributors submit the same footage to multiple sites at once. Since the stock video libraries are not exclusive, you may find the same video on several sites (and the licensing fee may be different too).
As an active user of stock videos, we see a caveat. With millions of videos already available, it is difficult to find really good gems in these massive libraries. So the size may not matter much if the good stuff is nowhere to be found. We hope that these consolidation efforts will produce more tools for video editors to find the right footage faster.