News Corp. Acquires Storyful For $25 Million

Strengthening its native advertising, video and social media efforts, News Corp. is buying Storyful for about $25 million.
Founded in 2008, the Dublin-based start-up helps publishers aggregate news from various social media networks, verify sources and secure rights to user-generated content, and -- of particular interest to marketers -- pair publishers’ content with outside fare.
The latter specialty will help News Corp. develop its native advertising strategy, according to Raju Narisetti, senior vice president and deputy head of strategy at News Corp. “We’re creating a [system] that’s about surfacing relevant content around existing content,” Narisetti said in response to a question about Storyful’s native application.
Bu, the system won’t be limited to News Corp properties, Narisetti said, assuring that Storyful will remain a distinct business unit with its own publishing clients. “We’re going to help them thrive on their own, and bring their tools into our newsrooms,” Narisetti said. “There’s a growing opportunity to help [publishers] engagement more with customers.”
The acquisition also complements News Corp.’s existing video capabilities, which include the creation and distribution of original and on-demand programming, such as WSJ Live and the recently launched BallBall in Asia, Narisetti noted.
Storyful also provides social media dashboards, real-time discovery tools, feeds and analytics to its customers, allowing them to integrate video into their news or ad efforts via online and mobile platforms, and to monitor social conversations and sentiment.
So far in 2013, verified user-generated videos managed by Storyful generated 750 million views for its partners, according to internal estimates.
Storyful’s management team of CEO Mark Little and executive editor David Clinch will continue to oversee the company’s operations. Little will report to David Brinker, News Corp. SVP and global head of business and corporate development.
Rahul Chopra, senior vice president of video for News Corp., will join the Storyful management team, taking on the additional role of chief revenue officer.
Storyful will remain headquartered in Dublin, while additional business development and ad sales staff are expected to be hired and based in New York.
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