- Interactive crime and mystery studio company Solve says it has raised $ 20 million in funding
Solve – an interactive crime and mystery studio spun off from Elisabeth Murdoch’s vertical networks – announced it has raised $ 20 million from Elisabeth Murdoch, Lightspeed Venture Partners, Upfront Ventures and Advancit Capital (Shari Redstone). With this funding round, Solve plans to expand into podcasting with plans to develop content in other media formats in 2020. This funding round has arrived in two cycles, the first in October 2018 and the second in June 2019.
Solve began last year as the original Snapchat show as part of an interactive murder mystery show. The audience plays the part of the detective in his shows.
Viewers of the program interview suspects and investigate evidence in an attempt to solve cases based on real crimes. Over 150 Solve episodes have been produced for Snapchat so far and new episodes have been created every week.
Thanks to Snapchat, the show has reached over 30 million viewers to date. And depending on the varietySolve founder and CEO Tom Wright said only about a third of the public had successfully resolved cases.
The company said there is a major opportunity to create storytelling content that audiences engage with. âWe’ve really dug into what we see as the intersection of entertainment and gaming,â Wright explained via Variety.
Today, Solve is launching a new series of podcasts on the iHeartRadio and Apple Podcasts apps. And Season 1 of the Solve podcast includes 10 half-hour episodes, each covering their own real-life crime case for viewers to solve. Viewers are urged to examine leaked audio files, voicemail messages and courtroom testimony to determine the killer.
In 2020, Solve plans to launch projects in all other forms of media such as video games. Wright was the CEO of Vertical Networks and he led the company for approximately 18 months to create original programming for Snap. He then left this position in September 2018 and remained Managing Partner of Freelands Ventures. Earlier this year, Whistle purchased Vertical Networks.
âWe believe Solve can fundamentally change the way we interact with narrative video storytelling. When we heard Tom’s vision for a cropped video that you not only watch but also have to ‘solve’, we knew it had tremendous potential, âadded Mark Suster, Managing Partner of Upfront Ventures.
The program was produced in partnership with SALT audio. SALT audio is also known for the âBlackoutâ and âCarrierâ programs.
Currently, Solve has 40 employees and the studio has a production team based at its headquarters in Venice Beach, California, as well as a team of engineers in London.
âWe’ve seen some incredibly popular mystery crime shows across media, including podcasts like Serial and Dirty John, TV shows like Making a Murderer and Law & Order, and movies like The Usual Suspects and Gone Girl,â commented Jeremy Liew, Lightspeed partner. Business partners. “The games have achieved prime status as a medium, but we have yet to see a game in the mystery crime format achieve the same success, and Solve will correct that problem.”