NBCUniversal invests another $200M into BuzzFeed


NBCUniversal made another $200 million investment into BuzzFeed, bringing its total investment into the media company to $400 million.

This latest round of money is intended to extend the advertising sales relationship between BuzzFeed and NBCUniversal, and will also see the two companies collaborate on production and social distribution for NBCUniversal Content Studio’s short-form digital video content. The investment will help BuzzFeed to focus on data science and technology, growing its Tasty food media network, and creating cross-platform advertising products, according to a press release. 

“Over the past year, BuzzFeed has proven to be a valuable partner across our business. From the Olympics to the record-breaking launch of Secret Life of Pets, BuzzFeed has helped us engage millennial audiences with our content and extend the reach of our clients’ campaigns to new platforms,” said Maggie Suniewick, president of NBCUniversal Digital Enterprises, in a statement. “We are looking forward to using the power of our brands to collaborate in more innovative ways that drive value for both companies.”

NBCUniversal and BuzzFeed have so far teamed up for the 2016 Rio Olympics on Snapchat, co-selling advertising deals for both linear and digital, and content partnerships.

“BuzzFeed is really perfectly positioned to continue to lead the industry. With digital distribution fully built out, mobile content is where all the excitement is and this follow on commitment from NBCUniversal will allow us to continue to build out our footprint, invest in new products and continue to aggressively grow our revenue,” said Kenneth Lerer, BuzzFeed’s executive chairman, in a statement.

Various reports have placed BuzzFeed’s valuation between $1.5 billion and $1.7 billion after the newest infusion from NBCUniversal.

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NBCU’s investments into BuzzFeed are largely made with the same intentions the programmer held when it last year invested $200 million into Vox Media, the publishing company which houses The Verge and Recode.

“Vox Media has a great portfolio of premium digital brands that deeply engage broad audiences,” said Steve Burke, CEO of NBCUniversal, in a statement last year. “Vox Media has strong leadership, top editorial talent and a unique technology platform. We are excited to be making this investment and building a collaborative partnership involving editorial content, advertising and technology.”

Although on a smaller scale, ABC/Disney made a similar investment earlier this year when it participated in a $15 million funding round for Playbuzz, a media company which also specializes in viral content.