Buzzfeed has announced plans to invest in news, video, lifestyle content and more international offices after securing $50m (£30m) of new venture capital funding from Andreeson Horowitz.
Founded in the US in 2006, the humour and news-based website has a strong focus on mobile and social media and now has 23 editorial staff based in the UK. It claims to attract around 150m 'unique users' a month, including 15m in the UK.
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The site is funded by native advertising – branded editorial content. It has created a new division called Buzzfeed Creative to run this side of the business.
It has also announced plans to continue its international growth with expansion into India, Germany, Mexico and Japan this year.
Founder and chief executive Jonah Peretti said: “Over the last decade, traditional media has been upended by technology, a disruption of the print, video, news, entertainment and advertising industries that is now accelerating at lightning speed. We created Buzzfeed because people still want to be informed, entertained, and inspired but the way they consume media has dramatically shifted.
"Today we think the time is perfect to grow our company, build our brand and greatly increase the content we are producing so we can be the number one digital media brand. The investment from Andressen Horowitz will allow us to double down on our company’s mission by creating a new organisation and expand rapidly in all areas."
Executive chairman Kenneth Lerer said: “The future of content companies is crystal clear: mobile, video, social and tech. Expanding Buzzfeed’s business across each of these areas is the key to the future. With distribution fully built out, content is the future and this expansion will allow us to create more and more content across the social web.”
Buzzfeed’s editorial team is to be split into three divisions: News, Life (including DIY, food and style content) and BuzzTeam (which provides the humour and entertainment content).
There is to be a doubling in the size of Buzzfeed’s staff correspondents around the world and a tripling in the size of the Life division.
Chris Dixon from Andreeson Horowitz said: “We’re in the midst of a historic shift in the media industry where news is increasingly being distributed on social networks and consumed on mobile devices — we believe BuzzFeed can emerge from this shift as a preeminent media company. As an early investor in BuzzFeed, I’ve seen first-hand how technology is at the core of the BuzzFeed business and culture and permeates every organisational function, allowing them to lead in this social and mobile dominant age."