Cheddar, which bills itself as a “post-cable” financial news network for millennials, announced $19 million in third-round of financing led by Raine Ventures, along with strategic investors including AT&T, Amazon, Altice USA, the New York Stock Exchange, and Lorne Michaels’ Broadway Video.
With this round, the New York-based company has raised $32.1 million to date, with a valuation of $85 million. Cheddar’s existing investors — Comcast Ventures, Lightspeed Venture Partners and Ribbit Capital — also participated in the Series C round. Gordon Rubenstein, managing partner of Raine Ventures, has joined Cheddar’s board.
In addition to the funding, Cheddar announced that it has hired Ross Cooperman, formerly head of engineering at KnowMe Systems, as its first chief technology officer. COO Eric Harris has added the title of president, while chief content officer Peter Gorenstein has been elected to the company’s board of directors and Melissa Rosenthal has been promoted to executive VP (formerly SVP of creative development and partnerships). Cheddar was founded in 2016 by CEO Jon Steinberg, former president and COO of BuzzFeed.
“Cheddar has quickly established itself as a transformational, next generation multimedia company and we are excited to partner with Jon Steinberg and this talented team to catalyze their next stage of global growth,” said Raine Ventures’ Rubenstein. Added NYSE president Tom Farley, “We are pleased to bring together leading influencers in business with innovators like Cheddar on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.”
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According to Steinberg, Cheddar intends to “collaborate creatively with Broadway Video Ventures” in the future. “Media is a business of collaboration and partnerships. We’re privileged to bring these varied and quality folks into our family,” he said.
Cheddar claims to reach an audience of more than 1 million live viewers daily, through distribution on Twitter, Dish Network’s Sling TV, Amazon Channels, Pluto TV, Vimeo, Facebook and its own apps. It also sells premium subscriptions to its live and on-demand content priced at $2.99 per month or $29.99 per year.
The company has marketing deals and sponsored shows with clients including Fidelity Investments, HP, Dunkin’ Donuts, and Ally, and has launched an MBA program with Strayer University.
Cheddar broadcasts live eight hours a day from the New York Stock Exchange’s trading floor and the corner of the Flatiron Building in the Sprint Store in Manhattan; the White House lawn and briefing room in Washington, D.C.; and at locations across the world. In the third quarter of 2017, the company plans to begin broadcasting from Los Angeles.