The ‘Spotify for News’ and startup darling of late, Blendle is in need of new cash. The Dutch financial times, Het Financiele Dagblad (FD), reports (in Dutch) about the company’s financial position based on an analysis of the annual report that Blendle deposited last week.
In a response to the article the company’s co-founder and CEO Alexander Klöpping told the FD that the company is growing and it therefore will continue to invest in the company. “In 2017 Blendle broke all internal records. Each quarter the quarterly revenue grew compared to the quarter of a year before.” Klöpping says to StartupJuncture that the company is in the final stage of talks with a future investor.
Klöpping founded Blendle together with Marten Blankensteijn in 2014. The company had a great head start. Amassing 60.000 registered users in just one month and being able to reach the ‘millennial audience’ an important target group for news and media organisations. Soon after the launch of Blendle a 3.8 million USD investment from the New York Times and Axel Springer followed. In its international expansion spree the pay-per article startup signed-up major 20 major US publications, among them The Washington Post, the Economist, the Financial Times, Time and Bloomberg Businessweek for a pilot in 2016. April 2017 the Japanese investment fund Nikke and Amsterdam-based fund INKEF Capital invested an undisclosed amount in the company. In the Netherlands Blendle is considered to be one of the more successful Dutch startups.
The company reports a loss of 2.4 million euro in 2016, compared to 1.6 million euro in 2015. The FD reports that based on the capital position at the end of 2016 and the profit made in that year the future existence of the company is ‘uncertain’ calling the annual report as its source. However, the same report concludes that its highly likely that Blendle will be able to attract additional capital in 2018. Klopping confirms this to StartupJuncture: “We’re in constant conversations with investors all around the globe and feel that we’re in a good position to raise again next year”, he says.
Blendle currently has over 1 million ‘readers’ and approximately 70 people working at the startup. Earlier this year, just after the capital injection of Nikkei, the company let 9 employees go. In 2016 Co-founder Marten Blankensteijn left the company in order to spend more time with his first child and focus on new challenges.
Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash