After receiving a $100 million investment from Discovery last fall, Group Nine, the recently reorganized media group that houses Thrillist, The Dodo, NowThis and Seeker, has dedicated some of those resources toward video development and brand expansion.
According to Group Nine, it collectively receives 4 billion monthly video views across all its brands; and according to data from Tubular, it’s also the “most engaging publisher of all the top 10 scaled video publishers in the world.”
Each of Group Nine’s brands announced new projects and series during the event.
NowThis, a social-first news brand, is launching a 10-episode series called Her Stories which will profile unknown women doing extraordinary and empowering things. Additionally, a new sports vertical will launch this fall and will focus on the stories behind the athletes. NowThis Sports will also work with EuroSport as an official content partner in Europe.
The Dodo, which creates emotional and educational content about animals, will launch two new series. Animal Heroes is a multi-platform program that highlights the stories of people who go above and beyond for animals; Best Dog Day Ever, coming this summer, is a series about adoptable rescue dogs finding their forever families.
Also coming from The Dodo is more VR programming with a series called Animal Eye View; Little Dodo, coming later this year, is The Dodo’s first kids brand and will create content for preschool-aged kids.
Seeker will also launch VR-specific programming in two series. The Edge will send VR cameras to the most extreme corners of the world; Ceremonies will take viewers to festivals around the world.
At Thrillist, new original series titled Food/Groups (a YouTube series about dishes tied to a different neighborhood, nationality or lifestyle) and War & Pizza (a long-form pizza making competition series) will be released this year. A year-long partnership with the TLC network will have TLC hosts and talent talk about their favorite meals and will appear in interstitials on TLC.
Group Nine will also partner with DigitasLBi in its first commercial deal; titled Socialize, this will allow brands to take existing content assets and turn them into bite-size video content to distribute across Group Nine’s social channels.