A Private Equity Fund Led By Former Louisiana Governor Buddy Roemer
Roemer Invests in TYT Network Out of Shared Belief in the Corrupting Influence of Money in Politics and The Power of New Media
LOS ANGELES – April 16, 2014 – The Young Turks Network (www.TYTNetwork.com) announced today that it has raised $4 million in seed financing with an option to go up to $8 million from Roemer, Robinson, Melville & Co., LLC (RRM). RRM is led by former Republican Presidential candidate, Louisiana Governor and Congressman and Chairman of The Reform Project Buddy Roemer.
The Young Turks Network (TYT Network) generates over 68 million views per month through its YouTube channels. The flagship show, The Young Turks, is the largest online news show in the world with more than 1.3 billion total views and 38 million views per month. The network recently announced deals with Hulu to host a 30-minute version of The Young Turks and the network’s entertainment show PopTrigger. The network was also a launch partner channel with Pluto.TV.
“RRM has been looking for two years to find the best platform in New Media in which to invest,” said Roemer. “We believe TYT will be one of the critical players moving forward in a new media world – edgy, unfiltered news commentary at its best. They are a lot like me, sometimes wrong but never in doubt. We expect their news to continue to push the envelope and their business to grow exponentially. ” RRM led the financing round in part because of the shared values between The Young Turks and The Reform Project. Both the network and Roemer, through The Reform Project, have made the removal of money’s influence on politics their signature issues. In Oct. 2011, TYT Network CEO and co-founder Cenk Uygur launched his super political action committee, Wolf-PAC, with the goal of ending the current system of campaign financing.
“The Young Turks and TYT Network have long been a source of independent news and politics for our millions of fans,” said Uygur. “While we don’t necessarily agree on politics, Buddy and TYT both understand money’s damaging influence on our government. Buddy and RRM support TYT Network’s mission to bring our viewers the unrestricted truth and analysis of the world’s news – from politics to movies, pop culture, sports and more.”
TYT Network will use the funding from RRM in part to fund the network’s expansion in 2014 and beyond onto other platforms such as over-the-top devices, local television and international syndication deals. In addition to platform expansion, the funding will help TYT build its sales team, upgrade technical infrastructure and create more shows. The Young Turks has grown from a single show on Sirius satellite radio in 2002, to the first daily video news show on YouTube in 2005 to the largest online news and politics show in the world and a dynamic network of shows and channels across different verticals all through private angel funding, advertising and other revenue streams that include paid memberships, partnerships with YouTube channels and deals with cable companies.
TYT Network recently completed an Indiegogo campaign that raised over $420,000, far exceeding the target goal of $250,000 and making it one of the most successful Video/Web Indiegogo campaigns to date. The contributions from the campaign funded the build out of TYT’s new studio, allowing the network to produce more shows and channels.
For more information, please visit www.TYTNetwork.com.
ABOUT ‘THE YOUNG TURKS’ AND TYT NETWORK
The Young Turks is the largest online news show in the world, covering politics, pop culture and lifestyle. The teleprompter-free show is one of the top 50 YouTube partners, with more than 38 million views a month and more than 1.3 billion total views on The Young Turks YouTube channel. The Young Turks received the 2013 People’s Voice Webby Award for best news and politics series, 2011 News/Politics Shorty Award, Best Political Podcast 2009 at the Podcast Awards and Best Political News Site 2009 at the Mashable Awards.
The Young Turks is the flagship show of the TYT Network, which includes What the Flick?!, TYT University, TYT Sports, TYT Interviews and The Point (on Town Square, a YouTube original channel), as well as new shows and channels, including PopTrigger, Nerd Alert and TYT Comedy.
Peter Axtman & Kat Jawaharlal