Huffington Post Veterans Take Key Roles at Aggregator BuzzFeed

6:43 AM PST 01/09/2012 by Georg Szalai
Joe Kohen/WireImage

The company has raised $15.5 million in new funding and named HuffPo co-founder Ken Lerer executive chairman.

NEW YORK - Viral aggregator BuzzFeed has raised $15.5 million in a new funding round  from sources led by New Enterprise Associates and also including Hearst Media, TechCrunch reported.

The report also said that Huffington Post co-founder Ken Lerer, who left when AOL bought the online news site and whose Lerer Ventures also participated in the funding round, will become executive chairman of BuzzFeed. Plus, ex-HuffPo president Greg Coleman will join the BuzzFeed board as an advisor.

BuzzFeed co-founder Jonah Peretti formerly worked as chief technology officer at the HuffPo before the AOL acquisition.

The company recently hired Politico's Ben Smith to oversee its editorial work. "The biggest shift for us is refocusing under Ben [Smith] as an organization that does real reporting and original content,” Peretti said.

BuzzFeed makes money off socially focused ads from such blue chip companies as Walt Disney and Microsoft. According to TechCrunch, it more than tripled its traffic to 25 million monthly unique visitors in the past year.
 

Email: Georg.Szalai@thr.com

Twitter: @georgszalai

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