Social media has revolutionised the way we communicate, connect and consume information. Over the past decade, the rise of platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok have made virtual social spaces an integral part of modern life – making the market an extremely lucrative one.
Of course, going into 2023 has not been easy for the tech sector in general – and social media companies have not escaped the hardships. Rising inflation, falling user numbers, the aftermath of a global pandemic, and Russia’s brutal invasion of Ukraine all have factored into mass layoffs across the board.
Twitter, for example, has let go of over 7,000 employees since CEO Elon Musk purchased the company last year.
Meta also let go of around 11,000 employees late last year after coming under pressure from investors following the fall of revenue for two consecutive quarters.
Along with everything else, the mass layoffs can be blamed on the crazy hiring binge over the past few years – which is now not sustainable in the current economic climate.
Investment in social media declined in 2022
Social media deals have for the most part been growing healthily year-on-year during the last decade – seeing a whopping peak in 2018 when deals in the industry totaled $29bn.
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This fell in 2019 to a total of $11bn from 392 deals carried out, this was still a significant increase from 2017, which saw a total of $5bn from 302 deals.
The total rose again in 2020 to $13bn and then again in 2021 to $15bn from 329 deals.
But last year saw a dramatic decline in deals in social media, falling to a total of $6bn from 324 deals, less than half the capital raised in 2021.
However, despite the challenges that plagued the industry in 2022 continuing into 2023, there has still been a respectable number of social media deals completed already.
Join Verdict as we look at the top five social media deals completed in 2023 so far.
Potentia Capital invests $45 in Soprano Design
Austraila-based Potenia Capital, a technology-focused private equity firm, invested $44.9m in local mobile messaging platform Soprano Design at the beginning of January.
Soprano Design gave over a 25% stake of their business in return for the capital, which they plan to use for driving growth and expansion.
Founded in 1994, Soprano provides global connectivity to mobile devices and uses a portal to manage the delivery of all communications.
“We think the company has significant potential and with our proven track record in driving growth and building competitive advantage, we look forward to supporting soprano continue its leadership position,” Amit Chand, investment director at Soprano Design said.
The Easy Company raises $14.2m in seed venture funding
The Easy Company, a US-based creator of a social wallet specifically for Web3, bagged $14.2m in seed funding in January 2023.
The round was raised by Lobby Capital, Relay Ventures, Tapestry VC, Upside Partnership, Scribble Ventures and 6th Man Ventures.
The Easy Company provides users with a social wallet that combines social discovery features with user-curated profiles, making it easier for users to navigate through the new world of Web3.
Users are able to edit their profile with their own personal NFts and digital art from different blockchains and multiple wallets – bringing them all into one place to create a social identity, FinSMEs reported.
On top of this, users are able to browse other profiles, send crypto and tokens to each other, and more.
The Easy Company plans to use the funds to accelerate growth and expand its operations.
myInterview Solutions secures $11m in Series A financing
myInterview, the leader in smart video interviewing software, managed to secure a $11m in Series A funding in January.
The funding round was led by the company’s existing investors Entrée Capital and Aleph, along with participation from Ocean Azul Partners, Digital Horizon and SeedIL Ventures.
The myInterview platform currently helps thousands of companies connect with potential candidates in a more personalised way. This is done through the use of smart video capabilities which help to make a more human-centric candidate experience, according to the company.
Companies such as Ocado, Goodwill, 7-Eleven and Six Flags currently use the software, which has been used to carry out over 7 million candidate interviews on its platform.
myInterview will use the investment to focus on future product developments.
"We are seeing radical change in the market when it comes to a new generation of employees and their relationship to work,” Benjamin Gillman, co-founder of myInterview said.
"We have experienced tremendous momentum over the past two years and this new funding will further help us to tackle the unprecedented labour shortages we're seeing by better sourcing and engaging candidates through a much more personalized approach."
Rezolve.ai secures $11m Series A funding
Resolve.ai, a Dublin-based provider of an AI-powered employee service SaaS (software as a service) platform, raised $11m in February.
The company provides a service desk that helps businesses to automate all of their employee support – including IT and HR tasks.
Resolve.ai offers smart AI chatbots to be integrated into MS Teams and Slack, along with Task Automations, Workflow Approvals and more.
The round was led by SIG Venture Capital with extra participation from Tri Valley Ventures, 9Unicorns and Exfinity Venture Partners.
The company intends to use the funds to scale growth and further advance capabilities of the platform to deliver industry’s employee service experience.
Codemotion secures $8.6m in venture financing
Codemotion, the platform for the professional growth of companies and developers on the search for IT talent, secured an $8.6m investment in a round led by Sinergia Venture Fund.
The round involved several Italian and international partners, including Endeavor Catalyst, Primo Ventures, and more.
Codemotion is a digital platform that aims to support developers in Europe – offering upskilling content and events, networking opportunities and a network of over 300 companies looking to hire.
The February fundraising round brought the total money raised to $16.5m, adding to the previous support from Primo Ventures, CDP Venture CapitalSGR and LVenture Group.
The company says it will be using the investment round to further grow the Codemotion platform and introduce new features to meet the ever-growing needs of developers and companies.
It will also be used to continue the goal of reaching one million active developers on the platform by 2025.
“This round represents an important acknowledgment of the results achieved in recent years and [is] a starting point for a new chapter of Codemotion focused on international growth and the export of our model to new European markets,” said Chiara Russo, CEO and co-founder of Codemotion.
“In a time of strong demand for software developers by many companies, Codemotion contributes to creating new opportunities in the digital innovation ecosystem, supporting, on the one hand, IT professionals in their professional growth and, on the other, companies that want to hire tech talent”.