Business Insider raising a new round?

Steven Loeb · January 20, 2014 · Short URL:

Funding will come from existing investors, with the majority being put in by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos

Business Insider is a company that has been rumored to be up for sale for years now, but nobody seems to be meeting its asking price. So, instead of taking the buyout, it keeps on raising money. 

The company, which raised $5 million in April of last year, is now getting ready to raise another round, according to a report out from ReCode on Sunday.

The funding will reportedly come from some of its existing investors, including Institutional Venture Partners, RRE Ventures, Marc Andreessen and Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos. Bezos led Business Insider's last round of funding as a personal investment, and he is likely to take an even bigger stake in this new round, via Bezos Expeditions, his personal investment vehicle.

Business Insider has already raised $18.6 million in its six year history. Additional investors include RRE Ventures and Allen & Company.

Beyond his investment in the company, Bezos and Henry Blodget, Business Insider's co-founder, CEO and Editor-in-Chief, actually have a long history together.

Back in 1998, when Henry Blodget was a senior Internet analyst for CIBC Oppenheimer, he made a name for himself, and for Amazon, when he predicted that Amazon's stock would go above $400 a share. A month later, that is exactly what happened, putting both of them on the map. 

Now Bezos seems to be returning the favor with his investments. That is not to say that that is the only reason that he would be investing in the news site; remember that this is the same man who bought the Washington Post this past August. Obviously he has more than a passing interest in journalism and news. 

Business Insider was founded in 2007 by Kevin P. Ryan and Blodget, who was five years removed from being banned from trading on Wall Street.

Blodget was charged with civil securities fraud by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission after then New York State Attorney General Eliot Spitzer published e-mails that Blodget wrote working as an Internet analyst for Merrill Lynch that conflicted with what the firm was saying publically. He was fined $2 million, plus forced to pay a $2 million disgorgement. 

The company is widely seen as Blodget's way of rehabilitating his image, and himself, following the scandal.

Business Insider is not the only news-dedicated website to raise funding this money: news website Mashable, another site that nearly sold not that long ago, took outside money for the first time, raising a $13.3 million Series A round, which was led by Updata Partners.

I have reached out to Blodget to confirm this news and to get more details, but he declined to comment. 

FULL DISCLOSURE: I was a writer for Business Insider in 2010 to 2011, though I have never met Blodget.

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