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M17 raises $26.5 million from its Series D funding round
Fremont, CA: M17 Entertainment, the live streaming platform, closes $26.5 million in investments in a Series D funding round. The round was led by Vertex Growth Fund, which is backed by Temasek. Several other investors also participated in the Series D funding round. These included Stonebridge Korea Unicorn Venture Fund, Kaga Electronics, InnoVen Capital, and ASE Global Group.
With consumer preferences shifting to individualized on-demand viewing online, M17 is capitalizing on the need for a robust, financially viable platform for artists. The company will focus on deepening its presence in Japan and the rest of Developed Asia, while planning expansion into the United States and new markets such as the Middle East, with the aim of securing substantial new users and artists.
Joseph Phua, M17's Chief Executive Officer, said, "M17 provides a virtual stage for performers to explore what is possible both artistically and financially, by allowing them showcase their talent and interact directly with fans everywhere in real-time. This new funding allows us to continue our mission of empowering artists around the world, through our online live streaming and social commerce platforms."
Tam Hock Chuan, Managing Director of Vertex Growth, shared, "We are impressed by M17's market leading position and continued strong growth in Japan, Taiwan and Hong Kong. With M17's unique value proposition and battle-hardened management team, the company is well prepared for its next phase of growth."
Additionally, in the current pandemic climate, users around the world are increasingly hungry for live online entertainment while young artists seek alternative income sources that can also promote their talents at the same time -- M17 has seen a record high of artists and user onboardings, as well as user interaction in the past few months.
"M17 is by far the largest pure play video live streaming company in Japan. Their technology is helping thousands of artists connect with mass audiences in a unique and personal manner. Even at their level of scale, M17 is showing astonishing rate of growth," said Fortune Sohn, managing director, Stonebridge Ventures.
"At a time where startups may be facing fundraising challenges, we are heartened by the confidence that our investors, led by Vertex Growth, have in M17's capabilities and strong growth potential. We will continue to leverage technology and deliver the best social interaction solutions to our artists and superior online entertainment to our audiences right in their own homes," said Joseph Phua.
Founded in Taiwan in 2015, M17 Entertainment is the number one live streaming platform in Asia and it has over 60 percent market share by revenue in both Japan and Taiwan.