Newsy Gets Another $1.5 Million, Expands Edit, Sales Ops
Newsy, the start-up behind the videocentric news app of the same name, has closed a second-round funding of $1.5 million from an unnamed St. Louis-based private-equity firm. That brings its total raised to $4.25 million. The Columbia, Missouri company will use the funding to expand its editorial, marketing and sales teams.
The Newsy app, available via the iPhone and iPad as well as Android devices, has gained attention for its 2-minute videos that highlight the differences in coverage of a given story by media outlets worldwide. The idea is to provide context around major news events in a format tailored to an on-the-go audience.
The iPad version allows users to download videos to the Apple tablet for later viewing, create personalized playlists, filter videos by category and share segments via Twitter, Facebook and email. The updated Newsy app across all devices is also integrated with Apple's AirPlay service, so users can stream content to Apple TV devices to watch videos on televisions.
To date, the iPad app has been downloaded 145,000 times and in February won an Appy Award from MediaPost for best news app. In the App Store, the iPhone Newsy app to date has earned an average rating of three out of five stars; the iPad app has a 3.5 star rating. Compare that to "The Daily," News Corp.'s $30 million newspaper app including HD-quality video that's only getting 2.5 stars.
Advertising in the Newsy app takes the form of banner ads and pre-roll video spots served by mobile ad networks including Tremor Media, iAd, and AdMob.