Reddit Raises $300 Million at $3 Billion Valuation

Irving Hamilton
February 14, 2019

Hong Kong-listed technology giant Tencent Holdings Ltd (HK:) is investing $150 million in US discussion platform Reddit, according to Techcrunch that cited multiple unnamed sources. A report last week by technology website TechCrunch signaled Tencent's interest.

Reddit Chief Executive Officer Steve Huffman told CNBC today that "one of the things that's been very important to us is that we can now assure advertisers that you are going to have a positive experience on Reddit and potentially even a new experience, a new way of connecting with customers".

Reddit said it plans to use the capital to expand internationally and grow its ad business, targeting the market dominated by Facebook and Google.

News of Tencent buying into the popular social news portal, which is banned in China, prompted concerns by some users that the platform could be vulnerable to the kind of online censorship that takes place in the Asian country.

Reddit has raised a new $300 million round of funding from investors including Tencent, Sequoia, Fidelity and Andreessen Horowitz among others.

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Some Reddit users are concerned that adding Chinese blood to the website might result in a cleansing of anti-China comments in the Reddit community.

Users also often photos of Winnie The Pooh to poke fun of Chinese President Xi Jinping's appearance.

Reddit was co-founded by Mr Alexis Ohanian, husband of tennis superstar Serena Williams. Reddit is ranked among the most visited U.S. websites, and has more than 138,000 "communities" for discussions on various topics.

Tencent has invested in a broad array of companies, including Tesla Inc, Snapchat-parent Snap Inc and Epic Games Inc - the maker of popular video game Fortnite.

Reddit is also known for "ask me anything" sessions with well-known people such as Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates and former United States president Barack Obama.

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