Glam Media, which runs a network of sites focused on women, is reported to be receiving another $200m (£99.5m) in funding, a whopping amount for a company that essentially doesn’t own many online assets.
VentureBeat has a copy of the document (pdf) Glam has been sending out to potential investors, which trumpets the network’s visitor numbers, reach and projected revenues.
Matt Marshall at VentureBeat also reckons that Glam will announce a deal with Google that will see the search engine power searches on ‘Glam’s sites’. This is news to many of the people that actually own these websites.
Glam’s claims in the document include:
- It has number one reach for women, according to comScore figures, as well as being the fastest growing web property in the US, increasing unique visitor numbers from 782,000 last year, to 19.1m in June 2007.
- Glam Media’s monthly unique visitors were approximately 31m worldwide in May 2007, and 19m in the United States alone in June 2007.
- Glam Media is expected to generate $21m (£10.4m) in revenue in 2007, growing to around $150m (£74.6m) in 2008.
If it raises the $200m, Glam intends to use the proceeds to finance further acquisitions and international expansion. It raised $18.5m, mainly from DAG Ventures, in December 2006.
There is some controversy around Glam’s claims, with critics pointing out that Glam is more of an ad network than a destination, as Glam has ad deals with many of the sites in its network, rather than actually owning them.
Included in Glam’s impressive numbers is every site with which Glam has an advertising agreement, some of which seem to be there to pump up the numbers. For instance, Glam.com, the company’s main website, has just 650,000 monthly visitors.
In addition, Glam makes a big deal of its reach among the female demographic, and therefore its attractiveness to advertisers, but a closer look at the breakdown of Glam’s sites doesn’t back up its claims.
According to VentureBeat, half of Glam’s page views come from social network site MyYearbook, while a number of the other sites on the list are not exactly female-focused.
Criticisms aside, Glam could do a lot with an injection of $200m, solidifying its position and generating further growth in the process. The next few months will be very interesting for Glam and its competitors…