Four guys in an apartment who loved watching Japanese soap operas and Korean dramas turned their favorite past time into a big business. It all started when they officially launched DramaFever in August 2009. Soon after, it became the leading source of international videos in the US.
The videos they stream are licensed from media companies from all over the globe including KBS, JS Pictures, Shanghai Media Group and ABS-CBN, among others, which they distribute in high quality complete with English subtitles.
To date, DramaFever has around 1.5M regular viewers, 15,000 of which shells out $10 in monthly subscription fees to avail of a Premium Membership so they can enjoy commercial-free viewing and faster access to the latest episodes.
Free users get to enjoy watching the videos with ads. They also get features like their own private “History” page to keep track of episodes already watched, they get to write reviews, and resume watching where they last left off.
Just recently, DramaFever raised $4.5M in a Series B round led by MK Capital from the likes of Youtube co-founder Steven Chen, Google Executive Benjamin Ling and Spreecast founder Jeff Fluhr.
DramaFever will use the newly acquired funds to increase the size of their engineering team and to replicate its success in other international markets. They’re banking on the upsurge of people getting access to high-speed broadband connection as well as great, untapped content from non-Hollywood sources.
“DramaFever has found the way to create highly-engaging, sticky viewer experiences and new cross-border revenue streams for international media partners,” says Mark Terbeek, partner at MK Capital. “Given how fast and strong the company has grown despite the economic downturn, we’re excited to see what will happen next, especially as more people are flipping on their computers to discover new and better sources for entertainment.”