Warner Bros and 21st Century Fox are among a group of entertainment companies providing the venture with about $200 million in funding, Bloomberg reports. The rest of the cash is coming from institutional investors.
NewTV would use the financing to produce video series with Hollywood production values and YouTube durations that are designed to be viewed on mobile devices. Katzenberg is seeking to capitalize on the popularity of mobile video, which some in the telecommunications industry project will continue to grow exponentially through 2022.
Katzenberg has been meeting for months with investors to sell them on his vision for the company, and has turned down interview requests to focus on fundraising. He recently recruited Meg Whitman, former chief executive of Hewlett Packard Enterprise, to lead NewTV. The well-respected Silicon Valley tech executive served on the board of DreamWorks Animation and worked at Disney early in her career.
A spokesperson for Katzenberg declined comment.
NewTV would be positioned to tap into a marketplace where digital distributors are spending billions of dollars on original content. It’s conceivable that these short videos, of less than 15 minutes in duration, would find a home on Facebook Watch or Snapchat.
The video startup is incubated under Katzenberg’s WndrCo.