Digital Garage has led a $15 million Series D funding round in Wikia, the online platform for fans of popular culture. Other participants in the funding round include existing investors Amazon, Bessemer Venture Partners and Institutional Venture Partners.
Wikia, the social universe of fandom, today announces it has secured Series D Funding to enable the company to accelerate its global momentum with a focused entry into the Japanese and Asian markets. Digital Garage joins existing investors Amazon, Bessemer Venture Partners and Institutional Venture Partners, as well as a strong line-up of additional investors with strategic strength in Japanese and Asian expansion, significantly raising the company’s valuation.
As one of the world’s largest media companies, Wikia already represents over 120MM global unique users and 34 million pages of fan-authored content in more than 200 different languages. The site currently boasts more than 400,000 fan communities of video games, TV, movies, music, comics and anime, books, and lifestyle. Wikia reaches these fans through its web property (www.wikia.com) and a suite of mobile applications and has established strategic and syndication partnerships with top brands around the world including Warner Bros., Carbine Studios, IGN, IDG, and Roddenberry Entertainment. The company also recently announced Sony’s launch of a range of next generation applications with richly syndicated Wikia community content.
While Wikia reaches consumers and superfans across the globe, to date, Wikia has generated revenue primarily in North America andEurope. “Because Japan is a culture steeped in fandom and famous for creating video games, anime and comics – many of which anchor some of the largest Japanese and global communities in Wikia – this makes it a very logical and strategic country for Wikia’s global business expansion,” stated Craig Palmer, Wikia’s CEO and President. “The strategic investors in our Series D Round offer a wide array of media and Japanese business experience that will help us greatly accelerate our success throughout Asia.”
Digital Garage led Wikia Series D Funding. Digital Garage is known to invest primarily in companies entering the Japanese Market, Twitter being a notable recent investment. In addition, they offer media advertising/promotion solutions as well as payment solutions that will benefit Wikia’s launch in Japan.
Digital Garage board member Joichi Ito, director of the MIT Media Lab, who also serves on the board of Sony, The New York Times, Creative Commons, and Mozilla, will be advising Wikia on expansion plans into the market.
Joining Digital Garage in the Wikia Series D Funding are Asuka Investments, owned by Tsuguhiko Kadokawa, Chairman of KADOKAWA Corporation – one of Japan’s largest publishers of anime, comic book and video games; Tose – a silent force behind the video game market that has developed thousands of first party games for leading Japanese and global video game publishers; Suneight – a boutique investment firm that helped Wikia arrange a portion of Japanese investment; and Nobuyuki Idei – founder of Quantum Leaps, a consultancy that invests in and advises next generation private and public companies. Idei currently serves on the board of Accenture and Lenovo and was previously CEO of Sony.
Wikia’s existing investors – Bessemer Venture Partners, Institutional Venture Partners and Amazon also participated in Wikia’s D-Round.
Wikia, the social universe for fans, by fans, is the home for social fandom and the ultimate source for powerful and relevant pop culture, entertainment and gaming expertise. It is the definitive place for people to contribute to the assembly of original bodies of multi-media content around subjects they know and love. Using Wikia, anyone can form new communities around any subject or participate in over 400,000 existing communities by reading or contributing new content. With over 34 million pages of rich content, Wikia’s communities are the most authoritative information about any topic on the Internet. Wikia’s video game vertical (games.wikia.com) is a leading video-game focused information hub on the Web. Wikia’s recently expanded entertainment verticals (movies.wikia.com, tv.wikia.com, books.wikia.com and music.wikia.com) collectively represent the fastest growing U.S. entertainment destination around the world. Lifestyle.wikia.com boasts over 75,000 communities chronicling fashion, food and technology.
Launched in 2006 by founder Jimmy Wales, Wikia attracts more than 120 million global unique visitors per month and is ranked a Quantcast Top 25 and comScore Top 80 Internet site, as well as a Nielsen Top 10 social network. www.wikia.com or @wikia