Wattpad, an online platform for readers and writers, has announced plans to add 40 positions to its team in 2018. The news comes just months after the company raised $51 million in funding from investors including Tencent, a leading provider of Internet value added services in China, BDC, Globe Telecom’s Kickstart Ventures, Peterson Group, Canso, and Raine. At the time of the investment, the company promised it would use the funding to expand its team and international footprint in entertainment, which it is now in the early efforts of doing.
“In 2018 we’re looking for more people to help us achieve our vision to entertain and connect the world through stories. This year is already a milestone for Wattpad. Our community has grown to more than 65 million people–up 40% from just last year–who’ve shared more than 400 million stories,” the company wrote in a blog post this morning. “We’ve raised a new round of funding from international investors, we’re building on our work and success in in Machine Learning and interactive storytelling, and we’re expanding our entertainment footprint in new markets. Like the greatest stories, our ambitions are epic, and and we’re hiring more than 40 people this year, across all departments, to help us achieve our goals.”
Launched in 2006, Wattpad has grown its reputation from being an online community where users can come to read and write short, mobile-first stories, to being a go-to platform for entertainment companies who are looking for fresh, culturally relevant stories. Just last November, Lionsgate tapped the platform’s creative community to find three 500-word stories about choosing kindness that were then made into short films to promote the entertainment company’s feature film, “Wonder. Wattpad has also worked with Universal Cable Productions, eOne, CW Seed, Hachette Romans, and HarperCollins Children’s Books.
“Wattpad is the future of entertainment,” said Peter Misek, Partner, BDC’s IT Venture Fund. “By harnessing the power of verticalized data and AI, Wattpad has unlocked the true value of content creation, enabling discovery, production and distribution in exponentially new ways. The future can be found on Wattpad.”
Wattpad boasts a total monthly audience of over 60 million people who spend more than 15 billion minutes a month using the platform. According to the company 90% of its traffic is from mobile, with the average user spending 30-minutes per day using the platform.