LOS ANGELES--(BUSINESS WIRE)--MK Capital, a next generation venture capital firm emerging as one of Southern California’s premier digital media investors, today announced a $3 million Series A investment in Poptent, a social network dedicated to crowdsourcing video. Developed to bring brand advertisers and their agencies together with a vibrant community of 20,000 video creators, Poptent utilizes crowdsourcing to deliver advertisers high-quality commercials and other video for both online and offline use at a fraction of the cost of traditional advertising methods. Also known previously as XLNTads, the profitable company had been funded to-date by local angel investors.
The deal, led by MK Capital partner Yair Landau, comes as Poptent announces the hire of Andy Jedynak as its new CEO, and will facilitate continued rapid growth and additional hiring. The funding, along with Jedynak's leadership, will allow Poptent to increase activity in the areas of sales, marketing and client support. In the past few years, MK has invested in a number of pioneering Los Angeles-based digital media companies including gamer video network Machinima, the most viewed entertainment channel on YouTube; mobile location-based publishing platform Geodelic; and digital media producers Generate.
“As audiences consume ever more video online, advertisers need a high-quality low-cost way to reach them,” said Landau. “Poptent has cracked the code on successfully crowdsourcing commercial video providing its producer community great opportunities to generate highly original video for major brands. We at MK are pleased to help accelerate their growth and take the Poptent community to the next level.”
In addition to the hire of Jedynak, Poptent plans to grow through several key sales and technology hires, expanding its network of video creators and talented filmmakers, and making improvements to its website and systems. All of these initiatives are dedicated to increasing the company’s client base and building the strength of its crowdsourcing capabilities.
“Advertisers clearly realize that crowdsourcing their commercials and other video content is not only viable and highly cost-effective, but a superior way to make sure their advertising resonates with their target audience,” said Jedynak, who served as a Poptent board member before being appointed its CEO. “With this new funding we will invest quickly into growing our capabilities to meet the accelerating market opportunity.”
Jedynak joins Poptent having previously led KidZui, the Internet for Kids. While Jedynak was President, the KidZui product generated wide international acclaim, and became a top 50 online kids’ destinations in the US within six months after launch. Prior to KidZui, Jedynak spent nine years at AWS Convergence Technologies Inc., most recently as Chief Marketing Officer, where he shepherded the growth of WeatherBug from a concept to a top US Internet property. Jedynak also spent several years at NBC, leading several initiatives in the areas of sales, marketing, television production and Internet development.
“We are thrilled to have a visionary investment partner in MK Capital join forces with Poptent,” said Rick Parkhill, Founder and Chairman of Poptent. “Combined with our adding a CEO in Andy Jedynak who has an outstanding track record of successfully growing and leading new media entities, we are exceptionally well positioned for the future.”
Poptent, originally grown solely through word of mouth, has been able to attract major brands and therefore higher quality content creators, offering them the opportunity to earn money; hone their craft by participating and competing in real world assignments; and collaborate with like-minded and talented peers. Poptent is a true pioneer in video crowdsourcing for both consumer and B to B brands, and has emerged as the clear leader in this innovative new paradigm.
In addition to the Los Angeles office, MK Capital has its offices in Chicago. For more information on MK Capital and their portfolio of current investments, please visit www.MKCapital.com.
About MK Capital
MK Capital (www.MKCapital.com) is an established venture capital firm with offices in Chicago and Los Angeles. The Firm offers multi-stage growth equity and venture capital to companies in the following sectors: Digital Media, Data Center Automation, Software and Education Technology. As a member of the MK Capital portfolio, companies have access to an experienced partner with extensive operating experience. MK Capital plays a significant role with its portfolio companies, collaborating on strategy, operations, and technology as active members of the companies’ boards, leveraging insights from a strong understanding of industry sectors to help their portfolio companies grow.
Poptent (www.poptent.net) is a social network dedicated to crowdsourcing video, connecting top brand advertisers and advertising agencies with 20,000 independent video creators across the US and more than 80 other countries. Poptent's marketing and social networking professionals work with clients to develop high quality commercials and other video assets at a fraction of the cost of traditional methods for both online and offline use. Brands who "Poptent" their videos get the benefit of reviewing numerous video executions, then choosing the perfect videos for their needs. Poptent creators benefit through the industry networking and other resources available to them at Poptent, and by having their work seen, reviewed and potentially purchased by leading brands and ad agencies. Founded in 2007, Poptent's principal offices are in Southern California and suburban Philadelphia, with regional sales offices in New York, Chicago, and other key US markets.