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Tribe Reaches $17m in Round Two

[Sydney, AUSTRALIA] Sydney-based entertainment and online media company Tribe has completed its second round funding with a capital raising of AUS$17 million.

The funding has seen the recommitment of United Distillers and Vintners (UDV), a subsidiary of U.K.-listed Diageo and financial institution J.P. Morgan, together with follow-on investment from Tribe's chief executive officer and founder Milt Barlow and other early stage investors in the company.

Tribe said the funding will be used to continue to strengthen Tribe's Australian online entertainment city-focused portal network, its offline entertainment interests and expansion of its overseas business.

"We are delighted to have completed another milestone in Tribe's development," Barlow said. "The recommitment of both UDV and JP Morgan coupled with a recent exercise of options by the company's original seed founders is a terrific vote of confidence in Tribe's vision and progress."

Barlow said the next 12 to 18 months would see Tribe engage in some exciting opportunities both here and overseas "as we leverage our publishing technologies and unique content to new 3G wireless technologies and continue to build a world class company in the provision of youth content on a multi-platform basis," he said.

According to Tribe, the next few weeks will bring a series of announcements locally and internationally. "On the local front, you can expect to see an increased rate of syndication and brand extension similar to the programming we have recently completed for Sony's au.playstation.com site," Barlow said. "Overseas, we are close to announcing a lead banking partner that will spearhead a consortium to build up to 20 U.K. Tribe sites over the next two years with eventual migration of content and users to 3G Wireless technologies."

In June of this year, Tribe completed its Australia-wide youth-targeted grid of city portal sites - sydneytribe.com, melbournetribe.com, canberratribe.com, brisbanetribe.com, adelaidetribe.com and perthtribe.com aim to provide Australia's twenty somethings with "useful local, fresh and upbeat entertainment and lifestyle guides".

In September and October Tribe went live with its first two international sites in Los Angeles and London.