Will Ferrell’s video comedy site Funny or Die has raised a $15 million round from Sequoia and other unidentified institutions, reports Portfolio, in a broad look at the company’s business. Sequoia has been a backer of the site since the beginning, though no numbers have been attached to its previous investments. It’s also not clear whether this new number is completely separate from the past fundings, though the magazine says it was “just received”. The site, which has a staff of 30, will use the funds to hire creative and engineering talent. Also in the works is a revenue sharing scheme to compensate content contributors.
Despite the star power, fundraising and the popularity of its top videos, most notably The Landlord, Funny or Die still hasn’t proven itself. It’s a platform for video comedy, but it’s also a brand. And for the time being, it’s still a hit-driven brand, with traffic spikes coming when one of its top clips goes viral. Of course, by building up in the midst of a writers strike regarding new media business models, it’s going to be the subject of scrutiny.