Livefrye Grabs $47M In Funding, Will Expand Tech

Social media software provider Livefyre just closed a fresh funding round worth $47 million.

Adobe and Salesforce Ventures led the way, along with a number of existing investors, including Cue Ball, Greycroft Partners, Hillsven Capital and U.S. Venture Partners.

“We’ll use the money to continue pushing the boundaries of our technology,” Jordan Kretchmer, founder and CEO of Livefyre, explains in a new blog post.

Launched in 2009, the company has expanded from a system for social commenting to a platform powering live chat, live blogs, instant messaging, content curation and other social features through its StreamHub product.

Brands and publishers use the software-as-a-service platform to improve social interaction on their Web sites and other digital properties.

Livefyre claims hundreds of enterprise customers, including AOL Tech and Dow Jones/The Wall Street Journal, CBS, Conde Nast and Fox News.

Rather than defer to Facebook or Twitter for their community-building efforts, brands are increasingly building out their own social-friendly properties — with good reason. According to Forrester Research, U.S. online adults are nearly three times more likely to visit a brand’s Web site than to engage them on Facebook.

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In one case, Livefyre helped Sony build a social-focused microsite around the launch of its PlayStation 4 gaming console. The site, GreatnessAwaits.com, attracted a readership of roughly 75,000 fans who visited the site around 4.5 million times, and on average, stuck around for about four minutes per visit.

To date, acquisitions have played a big role in Livefyre’s growth and business development strategies.

In late 2013, it scooped up Realtidbits, a provider of enterprise-grade social apps and analytics. Realtidbits brought with it a client list that included The CW Network, Thomson Reuters and Dow Jones Local Media Group. In mid-2013, Livefyre acquired publishing services start-up Storify.

In early 2013, Livefyre closed its third round of financing, which totaled about $15 million.

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