Twitter has acquired newsletter platform Revue as its first foray into subscription revenue. The company said that the acquisition will provide a platform for its users, including those who built a large social media following, to monetize their content. The Revue team will build more features in Twitter centered around long-form content.
- Revue generates revenue through its premium offering — which lets users upgrade the number of newsletter recipients from 50 to 40,000 — and a 6% revenue share from paid newsletters.
- Twitter said that Revue Pro features would be made free, and the revenue share will be set at 5% compared to the 10% revenue share by its competitor Substack. Twitter added that it will continue to broaden revenue streams for the newsletter platform.
- Revue raised $486,000 in angel funding in 2016; the value of its acquisition wasn't disclosed.
- In July last year, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey said that the company is exploring other revenue streams, such as subscriptions, since its ad-revenue dropped last year. Last November, the company reportedly considered acquiring Substack.
- Revue is Twitter's fourth acquisition since December. The other three acquisitions: Podcast listening and discovery application Breaker, video chat app Squad, and digital agency Ueno.
- The company's share price is up 5% on the news announcement and is up 60% since last year.
- Last week, Forbes announced that it is launching its own paid newsletter platform where users can subscribe to receive content from individual journalists. The writers will receive a 50% revenue share from the subscriptions and ad revenue based on the number of page views, without any cap. Forbes said that the platform will have more editorial oversight, unlike Substack, which has much lesser editorial oversight.
- As writers' audiences grow, many of them are leaving newsletter platforms for more suitable, flexible business models. The group of writers who offered the newsletter "Everything Bundle" through Substack are starting a new media company, "Every," which has raised $600,000 in seed funding.
- More companies are investing in local-level newsletters — local digital news company Patch launched a platform last month that allows local reporters to publish their newsletters and websites.