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01/16/2007

Wetpaint Secures $9.5 million in Series B Funding

Wetpaint, the consumer-friendly Wiki for collaborating and publishing online, recently announced it has received $9.5 million in Series B funding led by Accel Partners, the venture capitalists behind Facebook, Brightcove, and Glam Media, and from existing investors Trinity Ventures and Frazier Technology Ventures. Wetpaint will use the additional capital to enhance and to market the Wiki platform to the growing number of consumers who want to collaborate and generate content online.

With User-Generated Content (UGC) widely seen as one of the most important trends of 2006, the innovative Wetpaint Wiki platform has seen massive adoption. Through the power of collaboration, Wetpaint sites grow much more rapidly than traditional websites, which require the original site creator to do all the work. Capitalizing on the same trends and business models that put UGC at the center of Time’s Person of the Year and Google’s 2006 Hot List, Wetpaint goes beyond the “you” of social networks to empower groups of “we” to dynamically create collaborative Wiki sites faster and easier than ever before.

“Wetpaint is the most consumer-friendly Wiki for everyday users who want to share their passions and interests online,” said Ben Elowitz, CEO of Wetpaint. “As Wetpaint enables more online users to express themselves and the Wiki phenomena grows, there is no doubt that collaboration will match, if not overtake, social networking as a primary online activity.”

Wetpaint has powered more than 150,000 user-created community Wiki sites that have received over 2.5 million user contributions since launching in June 2006. The Seattle startup has also caught the attention of prominent consumer brands such as AOL, ABC, CBS, American Express Publishing, T-Mobile, and HTC. These companies have partnered with Wetpaint to create community Wiki sites for their most active and knowledgeable users.

“Wetpaint sites increase user engagement and let advertisers connect directly with the most motivated and influential audiences in their target markets,” said Theresia Gouw Ranzetta, a general partner at Accel Partners who will be joining the board of Wetpaint. “This puts Wetpaint in a unique position to capitalize on deeply engaged readers and high-quality user-generated content.”

The Wetpaint Wiki platform is radically different from most other websites because people can easily add or edit text, photos, videos, or links just by clicking an “EasyEdit” button. And Wetpaint site creators are not alone when it comes to starting and maintaining a website -- they can invite others to help them add to the site. This makes Wetpaint a great option for fan sites, neighborhood groups, clubs, classes, or any group of enthusiasts who want to share their knowledge and experience.

 Wetpaint is changing the way people share and collaborate about passions and interests online through its consumer-friendly Wiki platform. For the first time, anyone who knows how to use Microsoft Word can use Wetpaint to click and type online. The company is privately held and headquartered in Seattle’s historic Pioneer Square. Accel Partners, Trinity Ventures, and Frazier Technology Ventures back Wetpaint.

For more information, please visit www.wetpaint.com