Plex, a streaming media firm, secures new investment as profitability approaches

Plex CEO Keith Valory confirmed the round closed this month, but was unable to disclose Plex’s new valuation. Recently, the company has been developing social features, as well, allowing Plex users to opt into a feature that tracks their viewing and shares it with friends. To date, however, it’s Plex’s ad-supported streaming that’s been helping Plex grow its revenue. And we’re in, at least, the top five if not higher in this space, and we feel like we’re doing really, really well,” he said. As a result of Plex’s ability to track users’ media discovery behavior and consumption across platforms and services, the company has a unique perspective from a data standpoint.

Media organization startup, Plex, has recently secured new funding to further expand its operations. What originally began as a simple tool for organizing media has evolved into a comprehensive platform for all your entertainment needs. This includes its popular ad-supported streaming service, which is now a major source of its revenue growth. The exact details of the latest funding round have not yet been disclosed, but it is larger than the $50 million growth round that was closed a few years ago. This capital injection will aid the company in reaching its goal of profitability, which is expected to be achieved by the end of the year or shortly after.

In an interview with CEO Keith Valory, he confirmed that the round closed earlier this month, but a new valuation for the company has not yet been revealed. While Valory humorously referred to himself as a “unicorn,” the true valuation of Plex remains unknown as the company has not raised funds from outside investors in quite some time. This latest round is also an inside round, with existing Series C investors Intercap and Kleiner Perkins leading the way. The exact amount raised will be disclosed at a later date through securities filings.

“We have the most supportive investors of any,” Valory stated confidently. “Funding has never been a concern for us.”

The recent funding follows a series of changes to Plex’s core product over the years. It has evolved from a simple media organization tool into a multifaceted platform that offers a variety of services to its users. In addition to organizing personal media collections, Plex now offers users the ability to watch free, ad-supported shows and movies, listen to music, stream live TV channels, and more. This also includes a feature for discovering new content and recently, the company has been experimenting with social features that allow users to share their viewing habits with friends.

Valory revealed that the company plans to further develop its social feature in the coming year, with the goal of expanding community capabilities for both content creators and users. Additionally, Plex announced at CES its plans to launch a TVOD marketplace, where users can rent content from top studios.

To date, the most significant source of revenue growth for Plex has been its ad-supported streaming platform. Despite the impact of the market downturn and resulting layoffs, Plex’s ad revenue saw a 45% increase in 2023, with its overall business growing by 30%. Engagement and usage have also been on the rise. The company remains on track to achieve profitability by the end of 2023 or early next year.

“We are a leader in this market,” Valory emphasized. “In fact, we are in the top five, if not higher, in this space. We feel that we are performing exceptionally well.”

With the ability to track users’ media discovery behavior and consumption across multiple platforms and services, Plex has access to a unique perspective from a data standpoint. This will be a major focus in future business initiatives.

“One of the things we have already proven in 2023 is that we can successfully monetize this data in a privacy-friendly manner. We do not use any personally identifiable information,” Valory explained. “In 2024, we plan to invest even more in this area. And although our current business is already growing at a rate of 30-40% each year, we believe that this could greatly surpass it in the next two to three years. It is a massive market opportunity.”

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Kira Kim

Kira Kim is a science journalist with a background in biology and a passion for environmental issues. She is known for her clear and concise writing, as well as her ability to bring complex scientific concepts to life for a general audience.

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