Jellysmack, worldwide leader in the Creator Economy, is now a unicorn with SoftBank led fundraise
Today, we’re so excited to congratulate Jellysmack on the announcement of their new round of funding led by SoftBank. This round of fundraising is so impressive for many reasons, and Jellysmack is now valued as a unicorn. We’re also proud that our first club-deal investment has now become the OneRagtime portfolio’s first unicorn — in just four years!!
I met the co-founders of Jellysmack, Michael Philippe, Robin Sabban, and Swann Maizil, years ago at the event LeWeb in Paris. Jean-Marie Messier and I were struck by the incredible vision of the founders for this market and how primed it was for disruption with data and algorithms. We were also impressed with their ability to position themselves in the influencer market when it took off, but above all for their ability to build momentum.
After rounds of strategy sessions with myself and Jean-Marie, Jellysmack became OneRagtime’s first ‘club deal’ investment. And today, just four years later to watch our first investment become a unicorn is truly incredible. but more importantly the leader of the creator’s economy. It’s been quite the rocketship ride alongside such renowned investors like investors Eryck Rebbouh, Bruno Kemoun, Boris Golden from Partech as well as Tony Zappala from Highland Europe.
One of the largest shifts in society over the last decade has been the start of the creator economy. While there have been creators engaging in their passion for years, few people were able to make a living from their creativity. This was limited to the few talented and popular enough to make a living as professional writers, artists, actors, and the like. Fast forward to today, and there are many more ways for creative people to make a living, thanks to opportunities offered by social media and technology.
The team is tackling some of the biggest issues in the space and has become a leader in the creator’s economy through building software to detect and develop the world’s most talented video creators through technology.
One of the biggest fundamental shifts stems from the internet decentralizing the media. Now, there are countless types of content we love, and it is no longer owned by traditional, big media companies. In fact, much of it is written, photographed, filmed, or created by ordinary people like ourselves. In parallel, new payment methods and ways of earning money have been developed that make the whole process more manageable and viable. Jellysmack optimizes, operates, and distributes creator-made video content to Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, TikTok, Twitter, and YouTube.
This shift has been systematically underway for a while, and was only accelerated by COVID. In many ways, the pandemic compelled us to rethink how we interface with technology. A combination of lockdowns and worsened unemployment sent creators searching for new ways to earn a living while giving people more time to hunt for and consume content, looking for ways to fill more time at home. Jellysmack puts tech and data at the core of the company, making it incredibly capital efficient with proprietary tools to drive social audience growth, unlock new revenue streams and amplify monetization.
While Jellysmack is a French company, they’ve succeeded in the consumer space in the US and across Europe. Jellysmack is now home to over 150 influential Creators, including PewDiePie, Brad Mondo, and Bailey Sarian. According to an EY study, YouTuber Felix Kjellberg, better known as PewDiePie, is one of the biggest hits, earning over $4 million a year in ad sales with over 107 million subscribers on YouTube.
Jellysmack-managed content boasts 10 billion global monthly video views and a cross-platform reach of 125 million unique U.S. users, reaching nearly 45% of all Americans and making it the third largest U.S. company in monthly social media viewers according to Tubular Labs.
Only five years ago, before OneRagtime’s official launch, Stéphanie and Jean-Marie met Ron Fisher from Softbank in New York. Little did they know that the giant would soon back their first seed investment and grow it into the unicorn that it has become today.
When we invested, we knew that the founders were exceptional with a truly unique vision. Jellysmack has forged their own path, become an industry leader and continues to impress us. A huge congratulations to the entire team.
We’re so excited to be a part of the Jellysmack journey!