UGC Buys Out the Critics: Flixster Acquires Rotten Tomatoes


In a bit of an unconventional deal, startup Flixster is acquiring Rotten Tomatoes, the authoritative online movie review aggregator, from News Corp. The acquisition gives News Corp., via its subsidiary IGN Entertainment, a minority stake in Flixster, which operates movie trivia and fan review applications on social networks and mobile devices.

The combined company will continue to operate separately branded properties for user-generated and professional movie reviews. Together, they have 30 million monthly uniques, 2.3 billion user reviews, 500,000 critic reviews, as well as movie information and social games, according to a press release.

The first reports of the deal came last month from Kara Swisher at BoomTown, who said at the time that News Corp. was considering buying Flixster. Update: Swisher points out that she later reported the deal would be a combined independent company, as was indeed the result.

Prior to the deal, Flixster had $7 million in funding from investors including Lightspeed Venture Partners, Pinnacle Ventures and Reid Hoffman.


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