Serialized fiction app Radish says it has raised $63.2M in Series A funding led by SoftBank Ventures Asia and Korean firm Kakao Page Corp.
The company also announced a new office in Los Angeles amid plans to grow its local team, build new content and adapt its original IP into gaming and TV opportunities.
Radish, which has offices in Seoul, Korea, and New York, says it has seen significant revenue growth since its 2016 launch, and that it has produced more than 6,500 episodes across 30 original series. Genres currently available on the app include romance and paranormal/sci-fi, but growth is planned for the LGBTQ, young adult, horror, mystery and thriller categories.
Korea's Kakao Entertainment Buys Fiction App Radish For $440 Million
All ‘Radish Originals’ are produced in TV-style writers’ rooms. Among the veteran soap writers creating content are Marlene McPherson, Janet Iacobuzio, Addie Walsh, Lisa Connor, Leah Laiman, and Jean Passanante, whose credits include Days of Our Lives, General Hospital, All My Children, The Young and The Restless, As The World Turns, and One Life To Live. They were brought into the fold by New York-based CCO Sue Johnson, former VP of Programming and Talent Development at ABC Daytime.
Seed investors in the company back in 2017 included UTA, Bertelsmann Digital Media Investments (BDMI) and Sherpa Capital while individual investors included author Amy Tan, ITV non-exec Chairman Sir Peter Bazalgette and Charlie Songhurst, former head of corporate strategy at Microsoft.
“With its own fast-paced original content production, Radish is best positioned to become a leading player in the global online fiction market,” said JP Lee, CEO and Managing Partner of SoftBank Ventures Asia. “Radish has proven that its serialized novel platform can change the way people consume online content, and we are excited to support the company’s continued disruption in the mobile fiction space. Leveraging our global SoftBank ecosystem, we hope to support and accelerate Radish’s expansion across different regions worldwide.”
“Our app is one of a kind because we’re coming at written serialized content from a different and exciting new angle,” added Seungyoon Lee, CEO and Founder of Radish. “We feel we can lead the market by providing hyper-serialized fiction that updates multiple times a day, unlike other serialized storytelling verticals such as online video streaming or podcasts which takes several months or even years to produce a season.”
“We are noting the exciting growth potential of the global mobile fiction market and will actively source and discover a diverse range of exciting stories together with Radish,” said Lee Jinsoo, CEO of Kakao Page Corp. “Through our partnership with Radish, Kakao Page Corp. will strengthen its preparations for entry into the North American market.”
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