Axel Springer becomes second largest investor in the social video news publisher NowThis Media in the USA
The New York-based start-up primarily addresses the target group of 18- to 34-year-olds, producing short videos about trending stories, designed for mobile devices and distribution across social networks. The new round of financing was led by Axel Springer Digital Ventures. NowThis Media has received a total of 16m US dollars from investors in this round.
Jens Müffelmann, CEO Axel Springer Digital Ventures and President USA of Axel Springer from 1st of January 2016, explains: “We are increasing our share in a promising journalistic start-up that is focusing on the attractive future market of mobile and social video consumption. The company has already built up an impressive reach of more than 650m video views per month and has been able to record its first successes with advertising customers. Our BILD and WELT brands are also benefiting from our participation and the mutual exchange of know-how and experience.”
BILD and WELT have been cooperating with NowThis Media for several months and are distributing videos from the start-up in Germany. Axel Springer would like to promote cross-company networking projects such as this even more in future: For this reason the “Axel Springer Global Network” was founded in mid-November 2015. Its aims are improved cooperation, a closer exchange of ideas, and cross-brand learning by editorial offices as well as all business divisions within the group of companies.
NowThis Media has developed a new type of technology which identifies trending topics on social networks and allows editors to quickly produce and publish high quality videos. The start-up produces around 60 videos every day for Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, Vine, Kik, WeChat and YouTube. It was founded 2012 by Huffington Post co-founder and Buzzfeed Chairman Kenneth Lerer, and former CEO of the Huffington Post, Eric Hippeau.
Axel Springer Digital Ventures first acquired a stake in NowThis Media in December 2014. Oak Investment Partners remains the largest investor after the new round of financing. Other investors include: Lerer Hippeau Ventures, Bedrocket Media Ventures, NBC and SoftBank Capital.
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