Reddit raises $300M in finance round led by China's Tencent

14 February, 2019, 07:09 | Author: Regina Silva
  • Credit Bloomberg

San Francisco-based Reddit raised US$300 million at a US$3 billion valuation, with investors including Andreessen Horowitz, Fidelity, Sequoia and Tencent, the company's chief executive told CNBC. Reddit is ranked among the most visited USA websites, and has more than 138,000 "communities" for discussions on various topics.

Both Snap and Reddit are banned in China, along with Facebook, Google and Twitter.

While it seems unlikely that Tencent and other investors would be able to control what gets posted on Reddit, it did not stop a number of users from protesting it.

The amount Tencent is investing in Reddit.

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Reddit has also actively worked to clean up the platform, once flooded with trolls and inappropriate content.

The platform has 330 million active users and describes itself as the "Front Page of the Internet". The government's internet censorship regime uses a series of technical measures to block foreign platforms and controversial content. Ever since it was rumored that Tencent was going to invest in Reddit, a number of Reddit users posted images of the Tiananmen Square Massacre. Chinese tech giant Tencent, the parent company of China's largest social network WeChat, is the lead investor, contributing half of the total financing. The push appears to be achieving results, with the company's ad revenue reportedly exceeding $100 million for the first time previous year. Search terms such as "six four" - a reference to the date of the event 4 June and "never forget" when typed into Chinese search engines have not returned any results.

Images of the storybook bear were reportedly banned online in China after bloggers used them to represent Xi in posts.

"Given that Reddit just took a $150 million investment from a Chinese censorship powerhouse, I thought it would be nice to post this picture of Winnie-The-Pooh before our new glorious overlords decide we can not post it anymore", says the post - which was voted up over 37,000 times.

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