- Insider compiles a weekly list of moves in the creator industry, from new hires to investments.
- This week includes updates at Pearpop, Triller, and UTA.
- See more stories on Insider’s business page.
Filming videos with other influencers has become an important growth strategy for content creators. It allows users to cross-promote each other’s accounts and draw in new fans.
A new startup called Pearpop is looking to turn these influencer “collabs” into a profitable business. The company created a marketplace for TikTok creators to pay — or get paid — to post videos with other users. It plans to expand support to other platforms like Instagram in the coming months.
While Pearpop is less than a year old, the company announced on Thursday that it had raised $16 million to date, including a new $10 million Series A round led by Alexis Ohanian’s Seven Seven Six. Other investors include Atelier Ventures and Guy Oseary’s Sound Ventures (Oseary is also a Pearpop cofounder).
“In the creator economy, everyone does have something to offer to everyone else, and everyone is in a position to help someone else,” said Li Jin, founder and managing partner at Atelier Ventures.
Every Friday, Insider gives a rundown of news on hires, promotions, and other creator company announcements from the past week. Are we missing anything? Let us know.
New hires, promotions, and departures
Clubhouse hired Grey Munford, head of content communications at Spotify, to join its executive team, Insider’s Melia Russell reported.
- Clinton Foy is joining UTA‘s investment arm, UTA Ventures, as a general partner. He will work alongside division lead Sam Wick. Clinton was previously a general partner and managing director at Crosscut Ventures, where he led investments in creator startups like PlayVS and the esports franchise Immortals, which he cofounded and incubated.
- UTA also hired Heather Brooks Karatz as its new EVP for growth and operations. Karatz’s mandate is to focus on developing Klutch Sports Group (where UTA is an investor) and the company’s music and influencer businesses. She previously served as president at the XFL team, the Los Angeles Wildcats.
- Triller is swapping out its CEO Mike Lu for Mahi de Silva, who is currently the company’s nonexecutive board chairman. The move was announced after TrillerNet (Triller’s parent company) acquired de Silva’s startup, Amplify.ai. Lu is staying on at Triller as the company’s president.
- Zach “ZHC” Hsieh is replacing James Charles as the host of the YouTube Originals series “Instant Influencer,” Variety reported.
- DJ Jacobs is joining the new entertainment division of Riot Games, Deadline reported.
New talent signings
- Esports organization 100 Thieves signed Valorant streamer Kyedae Shymko. Shymko, 19, is 100 Thieves’ first international content creator, the company said. “I started my streaming career less than half a year ago and knowing that I have such a talented group of creators and staff behind me makes me feel very supported and it inspires me to work even harder,” Shymko said in a statement.
- Night Media signed YouTube food creator Gustavo “Guga” Tosta, Tubefilter reported.
- WME signed Complex Networks, which owns popular YouTube channels like First We Feast and Sole Collector, Deadline reported.
Other creator economy updates
- Pico, a customer relationship platform for creators, raised $6.5 million in a new funding round led by Bullpen Capital, the company said. The startup has raised $10 million to date. Other investors include Bloomberg Beta, Precursor Ventures, Village Global, and Stripe.
- Creator “collab” startup Pearpop raised $10 million in new funding, the company said on Thursday. The Series A round, which was led by Alexis Ohanian’s Seven Seven Six with participation from Bessemer Venture Partners, brings Pearpop’s total funding to $16 million since its launch in October.
- TrillerNet, the parent company of short-form video app Triller, acquired the AI-based marketing platform, Amplify.AI. It also purchased the combat-sports streaming company Fite TV as it looks to grow its influencer-boxing division, Triller Fight Club. The company didn’t share the purchase price for either deal.
- Internet star Tana Mongeau is heading up a new influencer-management division at the social-media marketing company Unruly Agency. The new group will be run by Mongeau, Unruly cofounder Tara Electra, and Mongeau’s manager David Weintraub, who is also the CEO of DWE Talent Management.
Read last week’s creator economy updates, here.
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