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Sweet Irony: Banned in China Gets Funding from China

Alexis Kerry Ohanian, CEO, and co-founder, Reddit

Alexis Kerry Ohanian, CEO, and co-founder, Reddit; Picture: NBC Bay Area

Reddit, the free-speech haven of the internet, has recently received funding from Tencent. Funnily, Tencent is a Chinese tech giant and Reddit is banned in the country. Moreover, associating with censorship is a defining feature of Tencent. This move has drawn flak towards Reddit from its own community. However, it has elevated its valuation by $300 Mn to now be $3Bn.

San Francisco, USA: Reddit is social media’s favourite and a meme haven and unfortunately, it’s banned in China. This is a rather funny thing in introspection when you consider the recent Series D funding Reddit raised. The social media service has raised $300 Mn in funding from Chinese tech giant Tencent. While Tencent is one of the leading pillars of Chinese censorship, Reddit is the place trolls abound.

This move did earn Reddit some criticism from various quarters of the society. The irony is not lost on the redditors, as well. The community is already speaking up against this development. Memes centered around  President of China Xi Jinping resembling Winnie The Pooh are simply everywhere now.

A cartoon on this funding affair of Tencent and China

A cartoon on this funding affair; Picture: TechCrunch

Beyond the Asian tech giant, the rest of the round came from previous investors including Sequoia, Fidelity, Andreessen Horowitz, Quiet Capital, VY and Snoop Dogg.

Related Article: Amazon Invests in Aurora Innovation

The valuation of the company was $2.7Bn recently, but after this round, happily sits at $3Bn.


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