SPH invests in social media curator Crowdynews

SINGAPORE - Singapore Press Holdings (SPH) through its new $100 million media fund has invested in Netherlands-based Crowdynews, a social media curation platform for media companies that just raised €2.5 million ($3.9 million) in its first round of venture capital funding.

The Series A round was led by SPH and co-investor Netherlands-based venture capital firm INKEF Capital, Crowdyness announced on Tuesday.

"The combination of INKEF Capital's international and business development experience and SPH's extensive and long-standing background in media management and operations brings balanced guidance to our company, and we're excited to work with our new supervisory board members," said Crowdynews co-founder Jeroen Zanen.

Founded in 2010, Crowdynews gathers and filters relevant content from Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Vimeo and other social media, which it then posts alongside traditional news stories to enagage readers.

"Crowdynews was inspired when the US Airways plane landed in the Hudson River," said co-founder Edwin Kuipers.

"Most of the breaking news was coming from social media posts. Crowdynews found a way to integrate social media into the news cycle, and media companies have loved the reader engagement plus the revenue sharing model that gives them new digital income."

Said Mr Chua Boon Ping, chief executive of SPH Media Fund: "The company's innovative products and global reach demonstrate strong growth prospects. We look forward to playing a role in driving its development to the next level."

SPH's $100 million new media fund, launched in October 2013, looks at investing in new and emerging companies in media-related businesses.

Crowdynews plans to use the new funds to continue its global expansion. Customers include The Chicago Tribune, The Washington Times, AccuWeather and hundreds of other media outlets around the world.

INKEF is one of the largest venture capital funds in the Netherlands, with €200 million ($315.8 million) in funds under management.

As part of the investment, INKEF Capital managing director Robert Jan Galema will join Crowdynews' supervisory board of directors.