Animoto may be based in New York. But the startup, which is announcing $25 million in venture capital today, certainly has roots in the Pacific Northwest. The company’s four co-founders, Brad Jefferson, Jason Hsiao, Stevie Clifton and Tom Clifton, graduated from Bellevue High School in the 1990s. And its early investors include Madrona Venture Group and Amazon.com.
Both Madrona and Amazon re-upped in the new $25 million round, which was led by Spectrum Equity Investors. That’s a lot of coin for a company that helps people create online slideshows set to music.
But the profitable company has been growing quickly, boasting more than three million registered users and 100,000 paying users. (The company’s pro version costs $39 per month or $249 per year).
“We’ve only just begun to realize the full potential of our original vision for the technology and product,” said CEO Brad Jefferson in a press release.
He adds in a blog post:
The reason we’re so excited is because the financing means we now have the capital to ensure we can deliver on the vision we set out to achieve nearly five years ago. We’ve done a lot with $5M of investment; imagine what we can do with $25M!
The company, which intelligently organizes photos and videos in dynamic slideshows, has released a number of new features in recent months. Those include HD video, update iPhone capabilities and a new partner platform, but the company has a number of other feature plans in the works.
As part of the investment, Ben Spero of Spectrum Equity Investors will join the Animoto board. In the Seattle area, the company’s closest competitor is likely Smilebox, which allows users to create electronic greeting cards using their personal photos.