NBCUniversal has invested an additional $200 million in BuzzFeed, an online media company known for its “listicles” and quizzes, Adweek reports.
The online media company, which now reportedly gets more than 7 billion content views per month, said it will use the new investment to grow its Tasty food media network, create cross-platform advertising products and expand BuzzFeed News’ digital video operations.
NBCU parent Comcast has invested heavily in digital-native companies such as BuzzFeed and Vox Media to better service existing advertisers. The new investment gives BuzzFeed a valuation of around $1.7 billion, ups NBCU’s stake to $400 million, following an initial $200 million investment last summer. NBCU also invested $200 million in Vox Media.
NBCU will take a larger role in selling ads for BuzzFeed, with the ability to incorporate BuzzFeed’s inventory into its deals with advertisers; BuzzFeed also will have the same option to sell space on NBCU’s inventory to its advertisers.
The companies said they also will work together “to create new digital consumer experiences for NBCUniversal premium content.”
In the past year, NBCU and BuzzFeed have collaborated on several projects, specifically the Rio Olympics, for which BuzzFeed produced the content for NBC Olympics’ dedicated Snapchat Discover channel. In February, the two teamed with American Express to replace 30 minutes of national ad spots during primetime on Feb. 29 with sponsored content that was tied to NBC programming. BuzzFeed created content that was distributed on social media as part of that deal.
BuzzFeed also will take a bigger role in NBCU’s content studio, which produces advertiser-friendly content that is tailored to specific social media platforms, including creating and distributing the content on social media.
“Our collaboration has allowed us to focus on our respective strengths, learn from each other, and serve our combined audience better with compelling news, entertainment and advertising offerings that neither company could do on our own,” said BuzzFeed CEO and founder Jonah Peretti in a statement. “The investment allows us to remain a fully independent company but have access to and resources from the strongest and best media company there is.”
In August, BuzzFeed split itself into news and entertainment divisions amid media companies’ struggle for balance between covering news and politics, and then lighter fare such as social media, entertainment and lifestyle.
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