LOS ANGELES, CA--(Marketwired - May 9, 2013) - Yekra (www.yekra.com), the first digital entertainment distributor powering an affiliate marketing system that matches content to viewers by genre, has raised $3M in Series A funding led by Las Vegas angel investor Maurice Gallagher, as well as UK-based Bray Capital and angels Shay O'Brien and Michael Rogers. AffiliateConnect, Yekra's patent-pending, first-to-market audience building technology for producers, distributors, studios and networks, empowers content creators to digitally distribute entertainment to connected audiences through the sites, blogs, social networks and other destinations they visit most often.
Yekra provides full copyright, DRM-enabled protection for all material distributed on its platform, providing the first all-inclusive marketing suite that finds distribution points to create an audience by matching a piece of content to the subject matter of its affiliate outlets. Every affiliate that joins to distribute a specific film with Yekra enjoys a revenue share arrangement for the viewers it refers, and creators have full control over content price points, hardcopy DVD sale options, territorial availability and customization of the Yekra player.
Creators can also determine lengths of exclusivity, build a digital distribution strategy to coincide with theatrical release and integrate into multi-platform releases with other streaming services such as Hulu Plus or Netflix. Viewers can enjoy Yekra films on most any connected platform as a digital rental for a length of time determined by the rights holder, from smartphones and tablets to connected TVs or the web.
AffiliateConnect on Yekra launches with strong content on its slate including Tattoo Nation, a documentary starring Danny Trejo, Ed Hardy, and Travis Barker exploring the evolution of skin art from cookie-cutter designs to deep personal expressions of culture and spirituality. The film will be priced for $6.99 digital rental, and this price can be applied toward a DVD purchase for $19.95. Other unique films include ET / UFO clean-energy exploration in Sirius from Dr. Steven M. Greer and many more to be announced throughout 2013 and beyond.
"We want to bring a new technology to market that sits at the nexus of profitable premium content and on-demand, convenient access for any connected viewer," said Lee Waterworth, President of Yekra. "Today we pioneer the first system that both protects the content it distributes and makes it accessible to anyone -- anywhere -- with the capability to generate revenue on a cost-effective basis from day one."
Yekra entered early-stage beta in 2011 around the digital distribution of cerebral documentary film Thrive; What On Earth Will It Take? a title that opened online exclusively for a $5 PPV, and has attracted more than 12 million viewers throughout the course of its online run.
"Movies are the perfect product for online communities, especially those that match the genre of the film," said Miles Romney, Co-Founder of Yekra. "We've developed an affinity sales model on a scale that's never before been possible -- one that marries online communities to filmmakers in a win-win relationship."
Yekra plans to utilize its raise to bolster the public launch of its AffiliateConnect technology, recruit high-power titles for its slate and expand the service's capability to the scalable needs of major entertainment providers. For more information and to see a selection of the films currently available on Yekra, please visit www.yekra.com.
Yekra is the first digital marketing suite built to deliver on-demand entertainment to the most relevant audiences on any connected device. Yekra's market-first "AffiliateConnect" technology empowers producers and distributors to generate revenue by leveraging the "power of passion" within special-interest communities, matching viewers with the content they will naturally love -- and buy. Founded in 2011 by Lee Waterworth, Sonya Waterworth, Miles Romney and Chris Larson, Yekra came to life as the nexus for millions of viewers -- and marketing affiliates -- rallying behind the cerebral documentary film Thrive. The company is headquartered in Los Angeles, CA and continues to announce a long slate of first-rate digital video specials debuting throughout 2013 and beyond.