HOLLYWOOD--(“A” equity round of capital led by BlueRun Ventures of Menlo Park. This funding will be used to develop the company’s slate of multiplatform content initiatives. The first signature project is MyHollywood.com - a women’s web destination for celebrity and entertainment news, casual games, fashion and community. The site is currently in public beta.)--Hollywood Interactive Group, Inc. announced today that it has closed a $5 million Series
“BlueRun Ventures has been a great strategic partner and ally for our business and we look forward to their continued support as we develop the first MMO experience designed specifically for the millions of women who love celebrity news, casual games and shopping.”
MyHollywood.com specifically targets the fastest growing segment of internet users – women 18-34 who enjoy casual gaming. The site appeals to women who crave the excitement and thrill of playing a game that gives them a more tangible connection to Hollywood than the tabloids and television shows they currently enjoy. The MyHollywood experience stands apart from typical on-line games because the experience is rooted in real-world news and events. The content and game play is constantly updated to reflect breaking news. This creates a montizable engagement with women who want to be “in the know,” play games and earn rewards for keeping-up with the latest celebrity headlines, fashions and trends.
The centerpiece of MyHollywood.com is the avatar-based casual massive multiplayer online game (MMOG); The “Red Carpet Game” creates an immersive experience that allows participants to achieve progressive levels of celebrity. Players will create a custom avatar and take a trip into virtual Hollywood where they earn points by playing celebrity-themed mini-games, answering quizzes about breaking news and headlines, and referring new players to the game. Successful accumulation of points empowers players to collect high-status branded virtual items, establish a place to live, gain access to VIP (restricted) areas, and ultimately rise to simulated stardom through the games’ point system.
Hollywood Interactive Group will generate revenue through multiple streams including: Virtual item and premium package sales; pre-paid cards; premium brand placement/integration; traditional IAB ad units and pre-roll video; and revenue shares. Strategic partnerships will drive e-commerce, branded promotions, product placement, user engagement and retention campaigns.
“This funding represents a tremendous vote of confidence in MyHollywood.com and recognizes the incredible revenue opportunities driven by our audience on the Internet,” said Joey Carson, Chief Executive Officer, Hollywood Interactive Group. “BlueRun Ventures has been a great strategic partner and ally for our business and we look forward to their continued support as we develop the first MMO experience designed specifically for the millions of women who love celebrity news, casual games and shopping.”
“With MyHollywood.com, Hollywood Interactive Group will entice their female audience by empowering them to collect virtual items and elevate their in-game status by doing the things they already love: participating in social groups and forums, reading entertainment news, playing casual mini-games and virtually shopping for their favorite high-fashion items,” said Jonathan Ebinger, Partner of BlueRun Ventures. “Hollywood Interactive Group is a great complement to our Media and Internet portfolio.”
The company will roll out features monthly beginning with news, mini-games and avatar design tools until the fully immersive Hollywood-based virtual world experience is available, slated for early 2009.
About Hollywood Interactive Group and MyHollywood.com
MyHollywood.com is a women’s web destination for celebrity and entertainment news, casual games, fashion and community. The site was launched in 2008 by Hollywood Interactive Group, a privately held company backed by BlueRun Ventures. Currently in public beta, MyHollywood.com’s wide array of web content and entertainment features will eventually be offered in an innovative MMO virtual world setting. Hollywood Interactive Group and MyHollywood.com are based in Los Angeles, CA. For more information, please visit www.MyHollywood.com.
About BlueRun Ventures
Launched in 1998, BlueRun Ventures is a leading early stage venture capital fund with over $1 billion in capital under management. BlueRun Ventures' proven approach is to invest globally as a single fund in best of breed technologies and teams with the drive and ability to build leading global companies. BlueRun Ventures is headquartered in Menlo Park, California, with offices in Helsinki, Herzelia (Israel), Mumbai, Shanghai, Beijing and Seoul (Korea). For more information, visit www.brv.com.