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The New York Times is backing TheSkimm, the fast-growing newsletter that wants to be more than a newsletter

It’s not a huge investment, but it’s an interesting one.

TechCrunch Disrupt NY 2016 - Day 1
Danielle Weisberg and Carly Zakin 
Noam Galai / Getty
Peter Kafka covers media and technology, and their intersection, at Vox. Many of his stories can be found in his Kafka on Media newsletter, and he also hosts the Recode Media podcast.

TheSkimm, the fast-growing newsletter aimed at young women, has new backers, including the New York Times.

The Times is part of a group of investors putting a total of $500,000 into the New York-based startup. TheSkimm co-founders Danielle Weisberg and Carly Zakin say the money is an add-on to an $8 million round, led by 21st Century Fox, that they announced this summer. UPDATE: That round valued the company at around $55 million, according to a person familiar with the investment.

The other investors in this round are Yannick Bolloré, the CEO of French media conglomerate Havas; media advisory firm MediaLink; and Mariska Hargitay, the actress best-known for her role on "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit."

Weisberg and Zakin say the new money will go toward the same stuff the other money did, chiefly building out a video business. They say they hope to work with the Times in some capacity down the road, but don’t have specific plans.

"As news geeks, getting the New York Times to invest in your company is a huge deal," said Zakin, who started out with Weisberg at NBC News.

While TheSkimm appears to have a remarkably successful newsletter business — the two women say they have four million active subscribers, who open their Skimm emails at least a couple times a month — Weisberg and Zakin are anxious to prove that their business can extend beyond emails:

Earlier this year, they rolled out a paid calendar app, their first product extension. The two women say the app is working well, but haven’t released subscription numbers.

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