TheAmplify, a network of social media celebrities selling endorsements, has sold a majority stake to branding company You & Mr Jones of New York. The terms of the sale were not disclosed.
Culver City’s theAmplify was founded in late 2013 and maintains a network of so-called social media influencers; users on platforms such as Instagram, Snapchat or Facebook with significant followings. The network reaches more than 500 million users on social media, the company said. It is built on a technology platform that allows brands to coordinate endorsements with influencers, target audiences, and measure the impact of their campaigns.
Automating the process of building and executing influencer campaigns was central to theAmplify’s growth, said co-founder and Chief Executive Justin Rezvani, 27, who noted that brands increasingly want to conduct large-scale marketing campaigns using influencers.
“When I started the business in 2013, influencer marketing wasn’t a thing,” he said. “Our view of the future is influencers in general are going to be part of your overall marketing strategy.”
TheAmplify’s network operates on Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook, Vine, Twitter, and Periscope. The company has worked with brands such as Lions Gate, Pepsi, Ford, Campbell’s Soup, and Nestlé.
Using the additional resources of You & Mr Jones, which was seeded with $350 million in June, and has stakes in companies such ad tech firm Beeswax and entertainment site Mashable, theAmplify is aiming to extend its network into China next.
“Our goal is to integrate with Weibo in the future,” said Rezvani of the Chinese social media platform similar to Twitter. “China is obviously a massive market that we are interested. We want to be wherever our clients are.”