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Tasty Funding: Tastemade Raises $25 Million More from Scripps and Moves to Android

Now, everyone's a critic in the app-happy world we have baked.


Tastemade, the food-focused content company, said that it had raised another $25 million in a new round led by Scripps Network Interactive. Liberty Media and other existing investors — Redpoint Ventures, Raine Ventures and Comcast Ventures — were also in the round.

The funding brings the total investment in the Santa Monica, Calif. food video platform to $40 million. As part of the funding, Tastemade said it was will also be releasing an app for the Google Android mobile operating system.

“We are building a modern media company company to be where the audience is,” said one of Tastemade’s co-founders, Larry Fitzgibbon, in an interview earlier this week. “We need to be distributed to allow participation by everyone, and today it’s being done with an app.”

Until now, it has only been on Apple iOS. Tastemade said it would use the money to expand its content, which is aimed at millennials who like to eat — don’t we all? — and then talk about said eating.

In other words: Everyone’s a critic in the app-happy world we have baked.

Tastemade, which also makes short Web shows from its nifty studios and posts them on YouTube, has been of great interest to larger companies such as AOL, Yahoo and others to possibly gobble up, according to sources.

And, also recently, the hardest-working-man-in-show-business-and-now-digital Ryan Seacrest made a deal with Tastemade to will develop food and lifestyle television programming.

It’s interesting that there was no strategic deal was announced with Scripps Interactive’s parent, Scripps, which owns a series of related television networks, including HGTV, the Food Network and the DIY Network.

It’s yet another example of a bit of a phenom — especially in the Los Angeles area — of startups using the Google-owned video network to create content companies online.

Recently, for example, Maker Studios sold to Disney for $500 million and there are persistent rumors that Fullscreen is also being eyed for consumption by bigs like Yahoo and others.

See, I cannot stop with the food metaphors, so I will just post the the full press release from Tastemade, which was founded by three former execs from online content network Demand Media:

Tastemade Closes $25 Million Series C Round of Funding; Announces the Upcoming Launch of the Tastemade App for Android

Digital Media Startup Focuses on Mobile Product and Expanded Content Partnerships to Connect the World Through Food; Tastemade App for Android Available First on Samsung Devices

SANTA MONICA, Calif., June 26, 2014 — Tastemade Inc., a global, digital media company, connecting the world through food, today closed a $25 million Series C round of funding, led by Scripps Networks Interactive (NYSE: SNI) with participation by Liberty Media (NASDAQ: LMCA). The round also includes existing investors Redpoint Ventures, Raine Ventures and Comcast Ventures.

Tastemade also announced plans to release its popular Tastemade app for Android later this month — available first on Samsung devices. Tastemade will continue to develop its platform and community as well as expand content partnerships with leading brands to reach millennial consumers interested in exploring new ways to share and celebrate food.

“The new funding will enable us to accelerate our vision to create a global community of food lovers who share their passion for food through video,” noted Larry Fitzgibbon, co-founder at Tastemade. “Video is how our ‘Tastemakers’ connect with their rapidly growing audiences. By launching the Tastemade App for Android, we reach a new group of consumers and empower them to create amazing videos, discover the best places and connect with a like-minded community of food lovers.”

The Tastemade app allows consumers to create their own bite-sized, HD-quality episodes of the places and dishes they love — right from their smart device in just minutes. Shot, produced and uploaded directly from the app, these fun and informative, easy-to-create, one-minute video “raves” can be shared with a global community of food lovers across mobile and social platforms.

“Scripps Networks Interactive has a vested interest in staying abreast of the changing media environment. We’ve staked a strong claim in the food category, and Tastemade is bringing real innovation to the digital food space,” said Joseph G. NeCastro, chief financial and administrative officer, Scripps Networks Interactive. “Today’s food lover is both creating and sharing content, and Tastemade has developed technology to harness this creativity through the power of video.”

Tastemade continues to bring the world’s best Tastemakers in food together to create high-quality shows in the food and lifestyle category for digital platforms. Growing at triple-digit rates year-over-year, the Tastemade Network now reaches over 18 million monthly unique visitors (YouTube Analytics) across 200+ countries/territories. Tastemade content appears in over a dozen languages across multiple networks and devices, including Hulu, YouTube, AOL, Yahoo!, as well as the Tastemade App.

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