Photo: Bloomberg
Creator Economy
Venture Capital Startups

A New Map of the Creator Economy; Twitch Downloads Surge

Photo: Photo: Bloomberg

Startups founders are chasing creator dollars. A new report from early-stage venture firm Antler mapped more than 220 global companies servicing creators. The biggest category by far? Audience monetization, or startups that provide software and other technology to help creators make money outside advertising sponsorships. 

That focus isn’t surprising. Creators have found there’s a limit to the branded posts audiences can stomach. What’s more, many advertisers initially paused or cut influencer sponsorships when the pandemic hit, underscoring the need for alternative income. Companies rushing to fill the gap include PearPop, Fanhouse and OnlyFans, which allow online celebrities to make money from fan interactions, such as tips, often in exchange for a cut. Maven helps individuals build their own online courses. Rally.io provides a way for creators to establish their own digital currencies.

The second-biggest category offers tools to handle the unglamorous backend of running a business, including customer-relationship-management systems like those from Moe, website builders from Big Cartel and financial products, such as influencer-focused credit card Karat and tax app Earnr.

The data, which is weighted towards U.S. firms, shows a patchwork of upstarts catering to specific niches. What’s missing is a “super app” that would bring together many of these different functions under one roof, from tracking finances and interactions with fans to showing how much inventory is left in a creator’s merch shop. That’s an opportunity for the startup with the biggest lead, say Patreon, or a large social media company like Facebook with cash to burn

Other trends:

• Shopping during a live stream, which has long been popular among Chinese creators, is gaining traction. U.S. companies: Popshop Live and Supergreat.

• Reaching super fans directly via texting. Startup Community charges a subscription for this service. 

• European venture capitalists are joining U.S. counterparts in backing these startups, says Ollie Forsyth, author of Antler's first-ever report. 

On to other news...

Get access to exclusive coverage
Read deeply reported stories from the largest newsroom in tech.
Latest Articles
 
Modest Proposals Venture Capital
The End of Venture Capital as We Know It
Art by Mike Sullivan
All signs seem to indicate that by 2022, for the first time, nontraditional tech investors—including hedge funds, mutual funds and the like—will invest more in private tech companies than traditional Silicon Valley–style venture capitalists will. Many people are quick to write this off as a momentary blip where extremely cheap money and the global search for returns are...
Latest Briefs
 
China’s Kuaishou Closes its TikTok Rival Video App
SoftBank Builds $5 Billion Stake in Drug Giant Roche
Lyft Posts Sharp Rise in Q2 Revenue But Still Below 2019 Levels
Stay in the know
Receive a summary of the day's top tech news—distilled into one email.
Access on the go
View stories on our mobile app and tune into our weekly podcast.
Join live video Q&A’s
Deep-dive into topics like startups and autonomous vehicles with our top reporters and other executives.
Enjoy a clutter-free experience
Read without any banner ads.
Attorney-General Merrick Garland. Photo by Bloomberg
Exclusive Policy
DOJ Weighing a Lawsuit to Block UnitedHealth’s $8 Billion Change Purchase
The U.S. Department of Justice is weighing a possible lawsuit to block UnitedHealth’s $8 billion purchase of health care analytics and technology vendor Change Healthcare, according to people familiar with the matter.
Ramp co-founders Karim Atiyeh (left) and Eric Glyman. Photo courtesy of Ramp.
Exclusive Venture Capital Startups
Founders Fund, Iconiq Value Ramp at $3.8 Billion in New Funding Round
Corporate credit card startup Ramp is raising its fourth round of venture funding in under eight months, underscoring how back-to-back fundraising rounds—with relatively little business progress in between—is becoming the norm for startups in hot fields such as financial services.
Bumble signage at the Nasdaq when it went public in February. Photo by Bloomberg.
Markets
Where Has the IPO Lockup Gone? Tech Firms Trim Them Back
Some of last year’s most valuable tech initial public offerings, including Airbnb, Doordash and Snowflake, allowed pre-IPO shareholders to sell their stock before the traditional six-month waiting period expired.
Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang. Photo by Bloomberg
Exclusive Asia Semiconductors
China Antitrust Officials Delay Review of Nvidia’s $40 Billion Arm Acquisition
It’s not just Chinese tech companies that are facing difficulties with China’s ruling party.
Photos by Bloomberg; Shutterstock. Art by Mike Sullivan
Amazon E-commerce
Amazon’s Roads to Nowhere
For months, residents of Margo Drive, a narrow residential street on the outskirts of Charlotte, N.C., have puzzled over this question: Why do gigantic semitrucks hauling cargo for Amazon keep rumbling down their one-lane, dead-end road?
TaxBit co-founders Justin Woodward (left) and Austin Woodward (right). Photo: TaxBit, Shutterstock.
Exclusive Crypto Venture Capital
Crypto Software Startup TaxBit Triples Valuation in Insight-Led Round
TaxBit, a startup that develops tax software for traders of cryptocurrency, is raising over $100 million at a $1.5 billion valuation in a new funding round, according to three people with direct knowledge of the matter.