BuzzFeed Cuts 2016 Revenue Projections After Missing 2015 Target

Posted on April 12, 2016

BuzzFeed is an online media and entertainment company originally known for list-type articles featuring animals and celebrity photos. It has since expanded into original news and content. The company reportedly made $170 million in 2015 according to the Financial Times. This is a very impressive amount but it fell well short of the company's $250 million goal.

The Financial Times report also says BuzzFeed is reducing its 2016 target by 50%. The original target was $500 million. The new target is $250 million.

BuzzFeed received a staggering valuation last year when NBCUniversal made a $200 million investment in the young online media company. FT says this gave BuzzFeed a $1.5 billion valuation. The reduction in its 2016 forecast makes that valuation look very high.

Steve Burke, CEO, NBCUniversal, said of BuzzFeed at the time of the investment: "They reach a massive, loyal audience and have proven to be among the most creative, popular and influential new media players. We are pleased to be making this investment and for our companies to partner and work together."

BuzzFeed says it has 200 million monthly unique visitors. It also gets 3 billion video views. BuzzFeed says it has 1,300 employees worldwide. The company has not announced announced any job cuts and according to The Wrap, BuzzFeed says most of the information published by the Financial Times is wrong.

BuzzFeed says in a statement, "Regardless of your sources, much of your information is significantly incorrect. We are very please with where BuzzFeed is today and where it will be tomorrow. We are very comfortable where the digital content world is going and think we are well positioned."

A CNN/Money story says BuzzFeed is facing limitations with its advertising model which includes creating stories for its sponsors. CNN/Money says BuzzFeed "is no longer the industry darling that it was in 2012."

BuzzFeed could reinvigorate its brand and find growth through its video products. They will face hefty competition as this is where many online media companies are now focusing their energy but it could be a very lucrative market for the companies that emerge as the winners. Mashable recently announced layoffs. Mashable's Pete Cashmore noted a stronger focus on video in his note to Mashable employees.

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