LONDON, March 17, 2014 /PRNewswire/ --
Amid the growing availability of user-generated content (UGC) and a widening need for quality images in the online arena, Lobster, a UGC marketplace startup with Russian roots, today announced the opening of its London headquarters as part of a wider effort to expand its reach across the UK and globally.
At an estimated 1 to 2 billion Euros in value, the market for user-generated images and photos would initially appear to be saturated but efficient connections between users and buyers to exchange rights for already available social content still remain scarce. Experts note that user-generated images covering important real-life events are not readily available for legal use on social media while digital marketing is still largely reliant on traditional photo-stocks offering a limited range of standardized content at high rates and limited license terms.
Lobster, however, has created an automated solution that gathers social content and, at a user's discretion, makes it available to purchasers worldwide. CEO and co-founder, Olga Egorsheva, has highlighted Lobster's innovative approach to delivering high-quality user-generated content from multiple sources such as Instagram and Flickr, coupled with its easily searchable database and streamlined purchasing process, making it what she says is "a game-changer in the realm of UGC rights exchange marketplaces."
"Lobster is the marketplace for users of social media where they can enable others to legally acquire IP rights for their content and where users buy and sell directly to each other, receiving 75% of the revenue of each sale," said Ms. Egorsheva, who also underlined the ease with which users' photos are captured automatically from social networks instead of being uploaded through additional "clumsy" apps.
In anticipating comparisons with already-established photo stock agencies like Shutterstock, Ms. Egorsheva added that they largely target professionals and provide low income shares for authors while offering higher prices for buyers.
"Lobster appeals to a broader range of social media users who share a creative spark yet care for their intellectual property rights. Our buyers are the digital news media and bloggers, marketing specialists and peer consumers requiring photographic images with a personal touch," she continued. "As of now, we are pulling user-generated content from Instagram and Flickr but we are already planning to expand our reach to other platforms and types of content as well. We want to make Lobster a truly universal marketplace."
From her new office space in central London, Ms. Egorsheva also noted that Lobster's competitive advantage lay in its easy-to-use comprehensive search mechanism that indexes content through hashtags, usernames, geolocation, and dates while also offering a simple purchasing and "no frills" selling experience.
"The magic thing about Lobster is that it automatically captures everything that's already available and created by users and will, in our ambitious plan, become an 'iTunes store for UGC,' spanning far beyond photos."
For further information and media requests, please contact Olga Egorsheva (+44-7749907397 / Olga.Egorsheva@ilobster.it)