Thrillist Makes First Content Acquisition With Food Show From YouTube’s Timothy DeLaGhetto, David So

Read on: Variety.

Thrillist, the food, drink and travel brand from Discovery-backed Group Nine Media, has taken its first bite in acquiring third-party programming. The millennial-focused lifestyle outlet has acquired series “Send Foodz” from YouTube comedia…

Group Nine Media Taps Jeff Siegel as SVP of Distribution

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Jeff Siegel, the former head of licensing and syndication at Verizon’s Go90, has been hired by Group Nine Media to be its new senior vice president of distribution.

In his role, Siegel will be responsible for driving sales and strategy around the company’s expanding intellectual property library, which includesdigital brands Thrillist, The Dodo, Seeker and NowThis. Siegel will be based in the company’s New York headquarters and will report to chief network & IP management officer Mickey Meyer.

“Jeff has extensive national and international media distribution experience and deep expertise in sourcing and negotiating TV and digital content sales and licensing deals with leading global platforms,” said Meyer. “As we continue to expand Group Nine’s IP library and evolve onto new platforms and into new formats, Jeff’s experience will be invaluable to helping us connect with new and diverse audiences around the world.”

Also Read: ‘Honest Trailers’ Creator Andy Signore Sues Defy Media Over Firing

Siegel, who has more than 20 years of experience monetizing digital content globally, most recently served as head of licensing and syndication at Verizon’s short-lived streaming platform Go90. During his time at Go90, Siegel oversaw off-platform content licensing and syndication for its original programming. Siegel also helped the company secure its first international content licensing deal. Prior to that, Siegel served as VP, international distribution at DEFY Media where he oversaw content monetization for the digital studio outside of the U.S.

“Group Nine is a proven leader in creating compelling IP that successfully lives across digital, social, linear and beyond and I’m so excited to join the team at this exciting stage in their growth,” said Siegel. “The company’s brands have already built huge audiences of superfans both domestically and abroad, and I look forward to helping to continue to expand the audience in new and exciting ways.”

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NowThis Taps Former CNN Correspondent Dan Lieberman for Facebook Watch Series (Exclusive)

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

NowThis has hired former CNN digital correspondent Dan Lieberman for its new Facebook Watch series, “NowThis Morning.”

Lieberman will act as senior correspondent for the daily news show, which will be hosted by NowThis managing editor, Versha Sharma. Additionally, Zinhle Essamuah, a Washington, D.C.-based producer with NowThis Politics, will become a full-time Political Correspondent for the series, which will stream on Facebook’s video platform beginning on Monday, Sept. 24  at 9 a.m. ET.

“I couldn’t be more excited to join the team at this incredible moment. I’ve been a huge fan of NowThis and am now thrilled to help kick off its new daily news show, ‘NowThis Morning,’ and report on the core issues that matter most to young people,” Dan Lieberman said in a statement. “NowThis has built a unique voice that instantly connects with young audiences, leading the industry in covering the most important stories through such a human and empathetic lens.”

Also Read: Discovery Communications Leads $40 Million Raise for Group Nine Media

The new series, which is being funded by Facebook as part of its news initiative, will center on breaking news and topical stories targeted at millenials and Gen Z. The daily news show will also feature four other NowThis on-air contributors, including Judah Robinson (International), Sally Turner (Entertainment), Alejandro Alba (Future & Tech), and Broadway’s “Hamilton” star, Javier Muñoz as a special contributor.

“We’re thrilled to announce such a talented and dynamic editorial team who will bring NowThis Morning to life for millions of young people on Facebook,” said Nancy Han, NowThis Morning executive producer. “I’m confident that Versha and the team of incredible on-air correspondents will spark smart and relatable conversations and provide informative morning news for a mobile generation.”

Week one guests on the show will include actress America Ferrera, former White House Associate Director of Public Engagement and actor Kal Penn, and actress Sarah Jones.

Also Read: How Instagram’s IGTV Is Redefining Long-Form Video

NowThis is a social news publisher that encompasses 13 content verticals which generate a combined 2.5 billion monthly views, according to the company. Those verticals include News, Politics, Entertainment, Future, Her, Money, Sports and Food among others. In December 2016, NowThis joined forces with Thrillist, The Dodo, and Seeker to form Group Nine Media, in a deal totaling $585 million.

Welcome to NowThis Morning

Posted by NowThis Morning on Tuesday, July 10, 2018

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Group Nine Media Hires Marketing Vet Christa Carone as President

Read on: Variety.

Group Nine Media, the digital-media rollup play that includes Thrillist, NowThis, and The Dodo, has hired Christa Carone as president. At Group Nine, Carone will oversee the company’s sales and marketing teams as well as its data insights group. Formed about a year ago, Group Nine this week announced $40 million in new funding from existing […]

Discovery Communications Leads $40 Million Raise for Group Nine Media

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Discovery Communications gave Group Nine Media another vote of confidence on Tuesday, leading a $40 million raise that the company plans on using to boost its digital video content.

The cash infusion comes a year after Discovery put $100 million into the budding media company, which includes video news creator NowThis and food and travel site Thrillist in its arsenal.

“Group Nine has quickly become a Big Three digital-first media company and, with 5 billion monthly streams, an integral part of Discovery’s strategy to nourish audiences across all screens and services,” said Discovery President and CEO David Zaslav in a statement. “The company is completely on track, led by a terrific management team, with superfan brands, strong tech and data and a strategic growth plan. We are proud to make this additional investment to help Group Nine continue its momentum.”

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Discovery — parent company of Discovery Channel and Animal Planet — has been rocked by cord-cutting, with shares of its stock falling 40 percent in the last year. Group Nine gives Discovery a pipeline to a younger demo, posting short videos of its heralded “Shark Week” on Snapchat earlier this year.

Group Nine said in a statement accompanying the raise it has 120 million social engagements and 40 million unique visitors to its sites each month. CEO Ben Lerer added the $40 million investment will help the brand invest in “quality content and original IP” moving forward.

The company’s $600 million valuation remains the same. Axel Springer SE and Lerer Hippeau also participated in the raise.

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Group Nine Media Raises $40 Million From Discovery, Axel Springer, Lerer Hippeau

Read on: Variety.

Group Nine Media announced that it has raised a $40 million follow-on round in new funding from Discovery Communications, German media conglomerate Axel Springer and venture-capital firm Lerer Hippeau Ventures. The company was formed last year with a $100 million investment from Discovery, combining three startups backed by Lerer Hippeau Ventures — Thrillist, NowThis Media […]

Group Nine Media Buys Jash, Digital Comedy Studio Whose Partners Include Sarah Silverman

Read on: Variety.

Discovery Communications-based Group Nine Media has acquired Jash, the digital comedy studio founded by Sarah Silverman, Michael Cera, Tim Heidecker, Eric Wareheim, and Reggie Watts. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. New York-based Group Nine was formed last year with a $100 million investment from Discovery, combining three startups backed by Lerer Hippeau Ventures […]

Can Ben Lerer Turn Discovery-Backed Digital Roll-Up Into the Next Vice?

Read on: Variety.

Shane Smith’s Vice Media has been the poster dude for how to build a next-generation media brand: amass a big digital audience — albeit with bumps in the road — and migrate the internet-incubated content and editorial style over to TV. A key ingredient in Vice’s growth has been millions in investment from Disney and A+E Networks. Now… Read more »

Discovery Investing $100 Million on New Digital Company, Group Nine Media

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Discovery Communications will invest $100 million as part of a new strategic strategy with Group Nine Media, a new media company that will merge and operate Thrillist Media Group, NowThis Media, The Dodo and Seeker.

“Today marks the start of a strong new company with tremendous brands, reach and scale,” said Discovery president and CEO David Zaslav.

Discovery will have an option to buy a controlling stake in Group Nine Media down the road.

Also Read: Cable News Is Killing Us, Discovery Boss Admits

The components of Group Nine Media combine for more than 3.5 billion global video views, more than 12 billion social impressions and more than 50 million social engagement per month. They also combine for over 40 million Facebook followers and over 30 million YouTube subscribers.

“This is truly a ‘win-win’ scenario, allowing our brands the opportunity to remain independent and build our own future, while at the same time, having the support of one of the best media and entertainment companies in the world,” Group Nine Media CEO Ben Lerer.

The partnership will include a commercial agreement that aims to enable advertisers to reach audiences across linear, digital, and social platforms, as well as live events, according to the company’s release.

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Discovery Investing $100 Million to Merge Thrillist, NowThis, The Dodo in New Digital Venture

Read on: Variety.

Discovery Communications, in a significant consolidation in the digital media sector, is investing $100 million into a new digital media holding company that will merge Thrillist Media Group, NowThis Media, The Dodo and Discovery’s digital network Seeker and its SourceFed Studios. The new company, Group Nine Media, will be headed by Ben Lerer (pictured above), formerly CEO… Read more »