- Adam Taylor/FOX
“New Girl” actress Zooey Deschanel has a startup, and that startup just got bought by Time Inc.
The Los Angeles-based startup is Hello Giggles, a general interest website for women founded in 2011, which Deschanel launched with friends Sophia Rossi and Molly McAleer.
A source with knowledge of the deal tells Business Insider the acquisition price was about $30 million – not bad considering the startup only raised a small seed round in 2014, and investors are getting about a 5X return. Those investors include Michael Pierce, Pritzker Group Venture Capital, and Third Wave Digital.
The website currently has about 16 million monthly global unique visitors according to Quantcast. Time Inc. thinks Hello Giggles will be a good addition to its entertainment portfolio, which includes People and Entertainment Weekly.
“We see the opportunity for HelloGiggles to continue to evolve and grow as a multimedia content business,” Time Inc. Chairman and CEO Joe Ripp said in a release. “The site provides strategic benefits including a contributor network that unlocks access to a new pool of editorial and creative talent, an expansive audience of highly-engaged consumers and experience in branded and native content solutions.”
Rossi will stay on and report to Time Inc.’s executive vice president.