By Sahil Patel
Kin, the digital media company and multi-channel network operator formerly known as Deca, has raised $12 million in a Series C financing round led by Canadian broadcaster Corus Entertainment.
The new capital will be used by Kin to fund its original programming and talent acquisition/support efforts, as well as expand the company’s ad-sales team and explore new business development opportunities.
As part of Corus Entertainment’s investment, the two companies will partner to launch Kin Canada, bringing Kin’s MCN, lifestyle creators, and original programming to the Canadian marketplace. Kin’s sales team will work alongside Corus to pitch custom content and advertising opportunities for brands in the country.
There are opportunities for brand alignment between Kin, which specializes in lifestyle and female-focused digital content, and Corus, which operates lifestyle networks like W Network, ABC Spark, the Oprah Winfrey Network, and Cosmo. The company’s portfolio also includes multiple kid-focused assets including TV networks, an animation studio, and a publishing business.
“Corus Entertainment is committed to building its digital media presence to complement our strong portfolio of market leading brands and content,” said John Cassaday, president and CEO of Corus Entertainment, in a statement. “We look forward to bringing KIN Community to Canada and helping them build their business globally.”
Currently, the Kin Community MCN boasts more than 20 million subscribers and over 4 billion lifetime views. One of its top talents is cooking star Rosanna Pansino, who was featured alongside beauty gurus Michelle Phan and Bethany Mota in YouTube’s first off-platform ad campaign for top creators. Kin also has a partnership with Pemberley Digital and Bernie Su, the creative minds behind the Emmy-winning transmedia series “The Lizzie Bennet Diaries.”
Corus Entertainment’s investment is just the latest in a series of investments, acquisitions, and mergers between traditional media and YouTube MCNs. Just this year, Disney acquired Maker Studios, ProSiebenSat.1 bought a piece of Collective Digital Studio, and DreamWorks Animation, via its previously acquired teen MCN AwesomenessTV, bought Big Frame.
In addition to Corus Entertainment, Emil Capital also participated in the Series C round, as did existing Kin investors Mayfield Partners, General Catalyst Partners, and Rustic Canyon Partners.