Defy Media Close $70 Million Series B Funding Round
Millennial-targeting multi-platform production company Defy Media announced today it has closed a $70 million Series B funding round led by Wellington Management Company LLP.
Defy currently produces over 72 original weekly series across brands that include Smosh, Clevver, Screen Junkies, AWEme, Break and Made Man, 20 of which average over 1 million views per episode. Combined, they generate over 800 million monthly views reaching 125 million viewers.
In the summer of 2015, Defy took its brand to the big screen with its first feature-length production, “Smosh: The Movie,” produced in partnership with AwesomenessTV.
In addition to YouTube and its owned and operated sites, Defy content can currently be found on more than 20 video platforms, including Comcast Watchable, Sky TV, Verizon’s Go90, Amazon Prime, PlutoTV and Spotify.
Defy — which was formed in the fall of 2013 with the merger of Break Media and Alloy Digital — will use the funding to continue the aggressive expansion of its programming across comedy, lifestyle and gaming verticals, as well as expand their presence on both emerging and traditional content platforms.
“Our brands and programming are currently being embraced by over 100 million people monthly and are poised to be included in the next iteration of paid cable and OTT bundled packages,” said Matt Diamond, CEO of Defy Media, in a statement. “These investments will further allow us to accelerate our original programming to capitalize on the changes that are happening within the media landscape.”
Guggenheim Partners served as the exclusive financial advisor to Defy on the Series B, and Lowenstein Sandler acted as Defy’s legal counsel. Existing Defy investors include ABS Capital, Lionsgate, Viacom and ZMC (Zelnick Media Capital).