INKEF Capital Leads the Series A Round with Singapore Press Holdings
GRONINGEN, Netherlands – 12 January 2015– Crowdynews, the social media curation platform for media companies, today announced that it has raised €2,5 million in funding. The Series A round was led by INKEF Capital and joined by coinvestor Singapore Press Holdings (SPH) through its New Media Fund. Crowdynews plans to use the funds to continue its rapid global expansion with media and newspaper companies. Customers include the Chicago Tribune, Washington Times, AccuWeather and hundreds of other media outlets around the world.
“Crowdynews was inspired when the US Airways plane landed in the Hudson River,” said founder Edwin Kuipers. “Most of the breaking news was coming from social media posts. Crowdynews found a way to integrate social media into the news cycle, and media companies have loved the reader engagement plus the revenue sharing model that gives them new digital income. It’s been a dream come true.”
Crowdynews gathers social media posts, photos and videos from Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Vimeo and other channels to augment traditional reporting with social media and engage readers. The Crowdynews platform uses advanced technologies such as natural language processing and artificial intelligence to achieve over 90% relevancy rates in more than 25 languages. Crowdynews is the only social media curation platform that is both multilingual, globally scalable and pulls from a list of premium social media services.
“Crowdynews was one of the early products in social media curation, and is still the only one to pull from almost all social media channels,” said founder Jeroen Zanen. “This funding will allow us to continue our aggressive global expansion, improve operational excellence, and drive innovation. The combination of INKEF Capital’s international and business development experience and SPH’s extensive and longstanding background in media management and operations brings balanced guidance to our company, and we’re excited to work with our new supervisory board members.“
INKEF is a venture capital firm focused on long term collaboration and active support of innovative technology companies. INKEF was founded in 2010. With € 200 million under management, the firm represents one of the largest venture capital funds in the Netherlands. So far, INKEF has completed nine investments in the healthcare, IT, software and new media sectors. Two of these companies have been successfully acquired (Sapiens by Medtronic and Profibrix by The Medicines Company).
“We were looking to expand our investments in new media and software,” said Robert Jan Galema, managing director of INKEF Capital. “Crowdynews has a unique angle on the social media phenomena, and it was a logical choice for our next step in technology investing. We are happy to work with the team as they take their solutions to new global markets.”
SPH is Asia’s leading media organisation. Beyond its stable of 19 licensed newspaper titles, its suite of digital products includes online editions of newspapers and magazines, as well as mobile applications. In addition, it has also ventured into book publishing, broadcasting, events, outofhome advertising and properties. The company’s New Media Fund, which was launched in October 2013, looks at investing in new and emerging companies in mediarelated and adjacent businesses.
“Media companies around the world are looking at ways to integrate social media as part of their product offerings,” said Mr. Chua Boon Ping, CEO, SPH Media Fund. “Through Crowdynews, media companies can quickly engage readers through the timely broadcast and sharing of headlines and breaking news stories. Crowdynews also offers new opportunities to grow digital revenues as advertisers have another channel to reach out to their target audiences. Crowdynews fits the profile of the investment that we are seeking. The company’s innovative products and global reach demonstrate strong growth prospects. We look forward to playing a role in driving its development to the next level.”
As part of the investment, Robert Jan Galema from INKEF Capital will join the supervisory board of directors.
Founded in 2010, Crowdynews is headquartered in Groningen, Netherlands. The company’s social media curation platform is comprised of three products: The Crowdynews Widget, Crowdynews Breaking Burner and Crowdynews Amplifinder. Customers include the Chicago Tribune, Washington Times, AccuWeather, NBA, Sport.es, The Malaysian Insider, Philippine Star, and hundreds of media outlets around the world. For more information, please visit www.crowdynews.com.