Week of 1/27/2022: Perpetual’s Perspective
By Adam Ryan
Steinberg is leaving Altice
TLDR: Jon Steinberg is leaving Altice, the parent company of Cheddar. Steinberg sold Cheddar for $200M 3 years ago. The former BuzzFeed exec announced he’ll be getting back to his entrepreneurial roots.
Perpetual’s Perspective: Steinberg may be the greatest hype founder in the last decade or two of media. I still don’t know a single person who likes or watches Cheddar, but he still scaled it to $50M in revenue and a $200M exit. So, despite the lack of product fit, the storytelling of Steinberg makes him a powerful force in the media industry — his next move will make headlines and he’ll have no problem raising capital. What do I think he’ll do? With the timing, I have to think he’s doing something with token economics and content creation.
Workweek launched a $10M fund
TLDR: The Information informed the world about Workweek’s first venture fund. It’s a $10M fund built for the creators associated with Workweek. It’ll focus on niche B2B verticals like Climate Tech, Healthcare, Media, and more.
Perpetual’s Perspective: For a long time, I’ve believed that media companies would make amazing venture firms. Maybe because of the data we collect on companies (we often know if a company has product-market-fit before they do). Or maybe it’s because expert creators know their industries better than almost anyone else, which means they have the highest likelihood to find the next 1,000X return. Maybe it’s because more founders today want investors with expertise and distribution. Does it bring a bunch of issues? Sort of. We have to disclose who we invest in and make sure we maintain audience trust and affinity. It’s not easy, but it allows us to diversify our revenue while giving new opportunities to creators that they’ve never had before. If you want to learn more about fund, or are interested in potentially investing, I’d love to add a few readers as LPs — reply and let me know.
Trump’s social network on the hunt for influencers
TLDR: Truth Social, the social network owned by Trump Media and Technology Group, reached out to influencers to get early access to their usernames. The contact number was dead. It appears it’ll launch in March.
Perpetual’s Perspective: I’m pretty surprised more vertical social networks based on ideology haven’t popped up. I have no idea if this social network will have any traction, but a new platform brings new opportunities to media companies in terms of distribution. If the team can secure influencers who have shown virality on TikTok, Twitter, etc. then it’ll be hard to ignore. My gut says there will be boycotts of the platform while others embrace it and create custom content for that audience. No matter where you fall ideologically, platforms that amass such attention can change the way content flows in the world. It took 7+ years with Facebook properties holding the top spot until TikTok came around. How long until TikTok’s reign ends?