Berlin-based ResearchGate, a LinkedIn-type site for scientists, today revealed that it has received $52.6 million from Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates and a wide spectrum of other investors in a funding round.
The investment round closed in 2015, but it’s just now being reported due to German regulatory requirements.
New investors for this round included the Wellcome Trust, Goldman Sachs Investment Partners and Four Rivers Group, with participation from the likes of Hollywood actor Ashton Kutcher and French entrepreneur Xavier Niel.
Gates re-upped after investing in a previous $35 million round for ResearchGate. Benchmark, Founders Fund and Tenaya Capital are among the other investors who added to their previous stake.
In a statement, ResearchGate co-founder and CEO Ijad Madisch said he was excited to bring the new investors on board.
“On ResearchGate, for the first time in history, millions of scientists are speaking out and providing transparency into their current research,” Madisch said. “ResearchGate has become the place where scientific progress happens – and where everyone can learn about it.”
In the 15 months since the funding round closed, ResearchGate launched a feature called Projects that keeps scientists up to date about the work being done by the colleagues in their network. The site lets more than 12 million members share over half a million updates daily, with 2.5 million publications added each month (including seldom-reported negative results).
ResearchGate noted that it has also implemented an advertising model that focuses on scientific goods and services as well as job matching.