Melbourne-headquartered video production marketplace Genero has raised $4 million in a funding round led by existing backer Ellerston Capital to pursue growth in the United States.
Founded by Andrew Lane and Mick Entwisle in 2009 off the back of their own experiences as client-side marketers, the platform connects brands to a network of 350,000 creators, from directors to editors, animators and production companies, to create video content, or as Entwisle put it, help scale their video production.
“Marketers of today require much larger volumes of video to use online, across all of the different social media platforms, for digital out of home and obviously TV,” he explained.
“They can’t produce the volume needed through the traditional agency production model because it is too expensive and slow, so we provide them with an alternative model that is still very high quality, but much more efficient and cost effective.”
The Genero platform now guides users through the process end-to-end, from brief to delivery of produced content.
Today counting the likes of Facebook, Google, and Unilever among its clients, Genero first looked to the music industry to build up both sides of the marketplace upon launch in 2009.
“This allowed us to start purely from a storytelling perspective and to build the most creative community of filmmakers on the planet. We worked with all major record labels and some of the biggest artists in the world including James Brown, Robert Plant, George Harrison and Alicia Keys,” Entwisle said.
“Before we offered our solution to the advertising industry, we wanted to prove the model and build the end-to-end production platform. We also needed to demonstrate that our community could bring fresh creativity and produce very high quality content, so that the world’s biggest brands would trust us with their briefs.”
With big brands now on board, the startup is focused on continually building up the community of professionals to ensure clients are “working with the most talented creators available”.
This, of course, means finding the best creators around the world; the decision was made to build a global business from day one, Entwisle said.
“We hopped on planes and went to the UK and US to build our music industry relationships and grow a global creative community. We didn’t want to build the business in Australia and then try to take it international because we felt the market was too small,” he explained.
The startup opened its London office five years ago, with a Singapore hub opening next. With its fresh funding now in hand, it is looking to further grow these offices and push into the US, with plans to grow its team in Los Angeles, San Francisco, and New York.
Genero was “already very well funded”, Entwisle said, doubling its revenue year on year, but the team decided to raise additional funding to “support a more aggressive growth plan”. The startup last raised $4 million from Ellerston Capital in 2016.
Entwisle said, “We were very happy that Ellerston wanted to invest more into our business. They’ve been a great partner because they share our vision for the business and have backed our strategy to achieve it.”
Image: Mick Entwisle and Andrew Lane. Source: Supplied.