The News Lens raises Series B to challenge Asia’s traditional media companies

The News Lens, a web-based journalism startup that targets to be the voice of function in Asia’s raucous media panorama, will give consideration to creating further distinctive video content material materials after landing a Assortment B spherical. The startup hasn’t disclosed the exact amount, nevertheless says it is throughout the differ of $2 million to $three million.

Based mostly in 2013 as an antidote to the country’s scandal-obsessed tabloids, The Info Lens has since grown to include separate editions for Hong Kong and international readers.

Its Assortment B was led by Wiskey Capital and incorporates returning investor North Base Media, a fund created by former Washington Put up authorities editor Marcus Brauchli and Media Progress Mortgage Fund founder Sasa Vucinic to help neutral media startups.

Totally different funding firms and angel consumers that took half have been Walden Worldwide, Trinity Funding, Angelvest, Dorcas Investments, Vic Chen, Ogilvy PR Taiwan managing director Wei Shang, Irene Chen, board director of the Foundation for Wonderful Journalism, Camp Mobile Taiwan regular supervisor Edgar Chiu and Alice Photo voltaic, co-founder and COO of Knock Know.

Chung says that when The Info Lens announced its Series A in Might 2015, it had about three million to 4 million month-to-month distinctive visitors. That metric has now elevated to 5 million to 6 million, and the company’s goal is in order so as to add one different million month-to-month distinctive visitors to its web sites by the tip of this yr.

The Info Lens at current has a staff of about 70 and workplaces in Hong Kong and Taiwan. Its Assortment B will most likely be used to create further video content material materials and livestreams with The Info Lens’ new world data anchor, Jennifer Shen, one in all Taiwan’s most prolific and recognizable TV journalists.

The addition of Shen is a huge step on account of it displays that the situation—which started as a Fb internet web page—now has the ability to compete with established media organizations not only for eyeballs, however moreover for experience.

“It’s the first time in Taiwan history where someone of her caliber from traditional TV has come over to join new media, so it’s like a milestone, where a new media startup in Taiwan has finally grown up and we finally meet in the middle,” says Chung. “It really symbolizes that it’s a major player and can attract high-caliber talent—the number one anchor from the number one TV channel—to our company.”

The Info Lens is doubtless some of the excellent digital media startups based in Asia or created for Asian readers which have gained traction by the use of social media, akin to YouTube channel 88Rising, life-style journal Juksy, and journey website online Black Buddha. Like The Info Lens, these firms are centered to youthful, educated audiences who’re disillusioned by typical media retailers.

One different signal that The Info Lens is popping right into a bonafide competitor to mainstream publications (in Taiwan, these embody the Apple Daily, the Liberty Times and the United Daily) is its new content material materials partnership with Time Inc., which allows it to translate and publish articles from Time and Fortune. Content material materials licensing to textbook publishers and totally different web sites is usually a rising earnings stream.

Chung says that over the following couple of years, The Info Lens plans to create three or four new web sites that will give consideration to enterprise, ladies’s factors, life-style and journey. Its first life-style website online, known as Every Little D (which stands for “details”), launched in January and Chung hopes it’ll create new alternate options for centered selling by attracting readers who usually skip headline data. Politically-neutral mushy data can even help The Info Lens break by the use of mainland China’s Good Firewall.

“There’s no reason why a piece on bespoke custom suit can’t be taken across platforms in Greater China and in English editions. We want to experiment with this for the Chinese market,” says Chung. “Lifestyle might be the one that’s not blocked in China.”

Featured Image: The Info Lens