SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Pat Romanski, Sean Houghton, Glenn Rossman, Ignacio M. Llorente, Xenia von Wedel

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Wikia Raises Over $10 Million in Series C Financing led by Institutional Venture Partners

Wikia to Expand Role in the Social Web with Focus on Mobile, Video, Lifestyle Content and Strategic Partnership & Acquisitions

SAN FRANCISCO, Nov. 30, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Wikia, the world's leading collaborative media company and home to many of the Web's largest social communities, announced today that it has closed over $10 million in an oversubscribed round of Series C funding led by Institutional Venture Partners.  Existing investors Bessemer Ventures Partners and Amazon.com, both also participated in the financing. Already profitable, Wikia will utilize the proceeds from the Series C to further accelerate its mobile and video initiatives, drive continued community and user growth, and opportunistically evaluate strategic acquisitions. The most recent funding brings the total investment into Wikia to $25 million.

"The post-editorial world represents growing demand by brands to engage with dedicated and passionate fans that chronicle topics they know and love," said Craig Palmer, CEO of Wikia. "With this Series C funding, Wikia will advance its mission as the provider of leading collaborative publishing platform on the Web. Our focus is to enable the members of our deeply engaged communities to interact with each other and their favorite brands and topics across all platforms and devices." 

Already the most robust platform for collaborative media, Wikia is committed to promoting even deeper engagement between community members and brands across all channels.  In 2013, Wikia will expand its platform and launch a unique and innovative set of integrated mobile, tablet and video capabilities that will enable users to simultaneously engage with content and contribute to communities across multiple screens.  Wikia's 250,000+ communities have aggregated over 100,000 videos, 14 million photos, and 5,000 hours of premium content that attract audiences across all ages, genders, geographies and interests, including gaming, entertainment and lifestyle communities such as DIY fashion, beauty, education and science.

"Wikia has organically established itself as the Web's deepest and richest destination for popular content," said Eric Liaw, Principal, Institutional Venture Partners. "The company's technology platform has spawned the premier gathering place for passionate communities to engage in deep, authentic, and accurate content creation. The ability for fans and communities around the world to seamlessly interact not only with each other, but also their favorite topics and iconic brands, is a keystone of the post-editorial world. Wikia is at the forefront of this wave in social media and we are thrilled to join them and their communities in the next phase of growth."

Since inception, Wikia has successfully brought brands and communities together.  In 2012 alone, industry thought leaders such as Bethesda, Blizzard, Sony Online Entertainment and Warner Brothers have all recognized the opportunity to directly reach Wikia's communities, which are comprised of the most passionate fans and highly engaged consumers. This month Wikia's global traffic surpassed 70 million unique visitors and 1 billion page views for the first time. 

"When you look at the social media landscape, Wikia is one of the truly authentic community driven sites," said Jeremy Levine, partner at Bessemer Venture Partners. "We have continued confidence in Wikia's direction, as they have their finger squarely on the pulse of consumer engagement around mobile and video and great opportunities to scale in new areas, including the 'Lifestyle' category."

"Wikia has always had the vision that users get great satisfaction developing communities and socializing around the things they love," said Jeff Blackburn SVP, Amazon.com. "We're excited the business continues to grow so rapidly – it's a very strong team."

In October, Wikia Games traffic exceeded 27 million unique visitors, making Wikia Games one of the top video game destinations on the Web and a leader in the industry.  Wikia Entertainment is experiencing stellar momentum with over 62% growth year-over-year while attracting over 30 million unique global visitors. 

About Wikia:
Wikia is a trusted collaborative media platform. 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 250,000 existing communities by reading or contributing new content. With over 20 million pages of rich content, Wikia's communities are the most authoritative information about any topic on the Internet. Wikia's video game vertical (www.wikia.com/videogames) is a leading video-game focused network on the Web. Its entertainment vertical (www.wikia.com/entertainment) is the fastest growing US entertainment destination around the world. Lifestyle (www.wikia.com/lifestyle) interest is the fastest growing collection of content on Wikia today.

Launched in 2006 by founders Jimmy Wales and Angela Beesley, Wikia attracts more than 70 million global unique visitors per month and is ranked a Quantcast Top 35 Internet site.  www.wikia.com or @wikia

About Institutional Venture Partners (IVP): 
With $4 billion of committed capital, Institutional Venture Partners (IVP) is one of the premier later-stage venture capital and growth equity firms in the United States. Founded in 1980, IVP has invested in over 300 companies, 93 of which have gone public. IVP is one of the top performing firms in the industry and has a 32-year IRR of 43.2%. IVP specializes in venture growth investments, industry rollups, founder liquidity transactions, and select public market investments. Since its inception, IVP investments include such notable companies as ArcSight, Buddy Media, ComScore, Concur Technologies, Dropbox, Fleetmatics, HomeAway, Juniper Networks, Kayak, LegalZoom, LifeLock, Marketo, MySQL, Netflix, Polycom, Seagate, Shazam, Synchronoss, Tivo, Twitter, and Zynga. For more information, visit http://www.ivp.com or follow IVP on Twitter: @ivp

About Bessemer Venture Partners (BVP):
Bessemer Venture Partners (BVP) is a global venture capital firm with offices in Silicon Valley, Cambridge, Mass., New York, Mumbai and Herzliya, Israel. BVP delivers the broadest platform in venture capital spanning across industries, geographies, generations and stages of company growth. From Staples to Skype, VeriSign to Yelp, LinkedIn to Pinterest, BVP has helped incubate and support companies that have anchored tidal shifts in the economy. More than 100 BVP-funded companies have gone public on exchanges in North America, Europe, and Asia. www.bvp.com

Media Contact:
Matt Clark/Courtney Greenberg
DKC Public Relations, Marketing & Government Affairs 
(212) 685-4300
[email protected] / [email protected]

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