The Berlin-based company was founded in 2008 by Team Europe – Gründerszene actually began life as the personal blog of TE’s Lukasz Gadowski – but now hopes the investment can help build its presence across Europe.
Among the business angels who took part in the round were Klaus Hommels (Skype, Facebook, Spotify), Florian Heinemann (Rocket Internet, Project A Ventures) and Felix Haas (Amiando). The Team Europe connection was strengthened with the involvement of Mathias Kutzner, while Klaas Kersting (Gameforge, Flaregames), Heiko Hubertz (Bigpoint, Digital Pioneers), Kamyar Niroumand (Software AG, GFKL) and Jens Hilgers (Turtle Entertainment, Geewa) also contributed.
Vertical Media is also responsible for the Spätschicht networking events and the Heureka! conference. The company has grown to 35 employees, and Daniel Kempf from PDV Inter-Media, which also owns the regional Augsburger Allgemeine newspaper, said: “Vertical Media has established itself in the startup landscape with a strong brand. We are impressed from the development of the firm to date and look forward to working together with the company.”
Vertical’s CEO Mark Hoffman, meanwhile, said: “We will become even better at informing, inspiring and aggregating the digital economy.”
In a blog post, Joel Kaczmarek – who joined Gründerszene as editor-in-chief back in 2009 – said that the funding would help the company fulfill its vision of becoming the leading digital publishing house in Europe. He also insisted that the company would retain its independence when it comes to reporting on its investors: “With the exception of the nice words in this article here, all of our investors will be treated with the same journalistic neutrality, fairness and criticism as any other actor in the scene too.”