BuzzFeed Raises $15.5 Million for Ben Smith Makeover

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An official Buzzfeed press pass.Photo: Gabriel Sherman

Since meme-mall Buzzfeed poached Politico reporter Ben Smith and installed him as editor-in-chief, the site has attempted to make on-the-ground political coverage bite-size and viral, but also original and informational. The shift in focus will likely be accelerated by a new round of funding, which totals $15.5 million from New Enterprise Associates, Lerer Ventures, Hearst Media, Softbank, and RRE Capital, as reported by TechCrunch. Buzzfeed co-founder Jonah Peretti, previously of the Huffington Post, is also surrounding himself with familiar players, as HuffPo co-founder Ken Lerer joins Buzzfeed as executive chairman, and ex-HuffPo president Greg Coleman comes on as an adviser, which might indicate the potential scale of this new operation. "It's so expensive competing against major media organizations," said Peretti. "And now we can do it."

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