Pre-launch short video streaming platform Quibi has raised an additional US$400 million from investors, bringing the total funding it raised to date to US$1.4 billion.
The startup, led by Meg Whitman and Jeffrey Katzenberg, is set to launch in April this year and the fresh funding will help finance content and marketing, according to a company statement.
Even if before the launch, the founders of Quibi have already announced plans to seek more funding. The startup has already attracted investors including Walt Disney Co., Walmart Inc. heirs, and Goldman Sachs Group.
Quibi (short for quick bites) aims to sell subscriptions to millennials and tell stories in bite-size chapters in 10 minutes or less, according to an LA Times report. Whitman earlier expressed confidence that the platform will be a hit.
Founded by Katzenberg in 2018 and headquartered in Los Angeles, California, United States, Quibi focuses on the core audience, producing awe-inspiring shows for an intuitive, mobile-first platform, and creating a culture where everyone is heard, the company said on its website.
Specifically, Quibi’s content is made to be only viewed on mobile devices in either horizontal or vertical video, with the user given the option to shift to one or the other within the same video.
The startup is collaborating with a stable of directors, including Oscar winners Steven Spielberg, Guillermo del Toro, and Steven Soderbergh, and studios such as BBC, ESPN, and NBC News to showcase 8,500 episodes in its first year.
“We are not YouTube, Instagram, or Facebook. We fill a niche they don’t do; we provide content for people on the go,” Whitman told reporters in San Francisco.
Quibi raised US$1 billion in August 2018 in a funding round led by Madrone Capital Partners, a private equity firm associated with Rob Walton, the eldest son of Walmart founder Sam Walton.
The said round was also backed by Alibaba Group, Time Warner, Warner Bros, 21st Century Fox, Viacom, MGM Studios, Sony Pictures Entertainment, and several other investors.
The company did not disclose the identities of the investors in its latest funding round.