5min, a site that syndicates instructional videos to a host of other web sites reaching 200 million viewers a month, has raised $7.5 million in a second round of funding.
The 5min site itself has built a library of more than 100,000 short, professional-quality videos sorted into different categories ranging from fashion to food to parenting to video games. Right now, users can view videos teaching them how to fix a leaky washing machine, how to cut glass with scissors, and how to tactfully deal with a significant other’s ex. It semantically serves its videos to sites like Answers.com, wikiHow, Wikia and Articlesbase, among hundreds of others.
To preserve the quality of its content, New York-based 5min has forged partnership deals with production companies like Kiplinger’s, Big Think, Woman’s Day and others. Because the videos are elaborately tagged, its easy for other sites to find and use them.
In fact, that’s the target of the new funding. The money will be used to continue development of 5min’s VideoSeed syndication platform, which allows any other site to automatically scrape and re-use relevant videos with monetized advertising built in. Videoseed matches more than 100,000 videos based on their content with other sites in 5min’s distribution network.
Its syndication capabilities may separate it from its rivals — sites like Howcast Media, Instructables, WonderHowTo and VideoJug — but 5min has also claimed to be the largest how-to video site of its kind with millions of monthly users. Last January, VentureBeat reporter Eric Eldon debunked this boast, citing comScore data showing 5min attracting a little over 100,000 monthly users. Of course, that number has probably grown in the last year and a half, although far front-runner DIY Network still wins out.
The recent round of funding was led by Globespan Capital Partners and included Spark Capital. 5min raised $5 million in a first round of funding from Spark Capital in November 2007. In April of that year, it brought in $300,000 from unidentified angels.
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