Lost My Name, the storytelling start­up that creates personalised entertainment for kids, secures $9M series A financing round

Lost My Name, the London based full­stack storytelling start­up and publishing trailblazer, announced today it has completed a $9 million (£5.6 Million) series A round of financing from Google Ventures, Greycroft, The Chernin Group, Allen & Co, and former SunGard President and CEO Cris Conde. The new financing will enable Lost My Name to further scale its business globally, as it works towards building the world’s leading personalised content, products and experiences for children.

The funding comes as Lost My Name continues to experience runaway bestseller success with its first project ­ the personalised picture book “The Little Boy/Girl Who Lost His/Her Name,” considered by many to be the best personalised book in the world. The book has already sold more than 600,000 copies in over 135 countries in just over two years.

Last year, Lost My Name secured the highest equity deal ever given in the history of BBC Dragons Den. Piers Linney invested £100,000 for 4% equity in the business. Since then, Lost My Name has rapidly emerged as true full­stack publishing pioneers. They run a lean, zero­inventory, vertically integrated operation, closely controlling all aspects of product development, marketing, sales, operations and customer support in­house. It’s this operating model that has enabled the company to grow 15x in the past 12 months, to invest significantly in a range of new R&D projects ­ all while remaining profitable on a monthly basis.

“We see personalisation as something with massive potential, ready to move beyond the existing outdated technologies in the market. When stunning illustrations and storytelling craft meets the possibilities that technology offers, we believe the results can be inspiring, beautiful and genuinely magical” said Tal Oron,
co­founder and chief product officer at Lost My Name.

Up next for Lost My Name is its second publishing project, which launches this fall. The new picture book engages children in the theme of belonging and their “place in the universe.” The book is promised to be the most technically ambitious physical picture book ever made, and will leverage even more sophisticated
forms of technology to personalise various elements of the story in ways never before seen. Additionally, Lost My Name is exploring other formats of media to create meaningful personalised experiences that utilise its proprietary software, including animation, audio and physical products.

Regarding the round, co­founder and CEO Asi Sharabi says: “We were looking for value beyond capital. As a London­based startup with global ambitions we were keen to raise in the USA and connect to the networks and talent of the hugely important US market. We assembled a dream team of backers from London, NYC, SF and LA that bring true expertise and insight across the entertainment and technology sectors. To have such an amazing group put their faith in us is both energising and humbling. We believe our new partners will help us to scale our business globally and accelerate our mission to take personalised entertainment to an amazing new level, creatively and technically, and to make millions of magical bedtimes.”

“The move toward customised content changes the way kids interact with books, video and toys,” said Avid Larizadeh Duggan, general partner at Google Ventures. “Lost My Name is on the path to personalise the world of children’s entertainment, bringing classic products to life in unexpected and delightful ways.”

Piers Linney, who invested in 2014, adds: “It was immediately clear to me that the Lost My Name team and their beautiful product had enormous potential and scalability. The support of such an impressive group of investors is testament to the hard work I know the whole team has put in. Through the combination of
echnology, creativity and rapid execution of an ambitious business plan they have created a disruptive, global business that will break the mould. Lost My Name is on track to become the most successful business to have come through Dragon’s Den.

Dana Settle, founding partner at Greycroft, said, “We were intrigued not only with Lost My Name’s vision to create a new global market for tech+narrative based personalized media but their ability to execute. They have built an impressive vertically integrated business model that is a unique hybrid between content,
commerce and service. We look forward to supporting their global expansion and the launch of some seriously exciting new products.”

“We are tremendously impressed by the innovative approach that Asi and his team have taken to creating high­quality personalized products for kids and families,” said Jason Bergsman, Senior Vice President of The Chernin Group. “Lost My Name uniquely brings the ‘on­demand economy’ to family entertainment, on a
global scale. We are excited to see Lost My Name expand to new geographies, titles, intellectual property, and media formats.”

About Lost My Name

● Founded by three fathers and an uncle, Lost My Name creates magical, personalised entertainment for kids, helping them to become curious, courageous and kind
● Lost My Name was founded in 2012, and is based in Hackney, London
● “The Little Boy/Girl Who Lost His/Her Name” is a personalised book like no other, creating a story around the individual letters of a child’s name ­ so each child’s name creates its own unique adventure from over 300 different story variants
● Lost My Name is a “full­stack” or ‘vertically­integrated’ business (the likes of Apple, Uber, Netflix and Warby Parker have all adopted this model), which means they control all aspects of the process in­house, from creating the stories, illustrations and technology, to printing the books, to marketing and sales
● Lost My Name is a proudly zero­inventory company, with every book uniquely printed on demand
● Record holders of the best equity deal ever given in the history of the BBC show Dragon’s Den ­ backed by Piers Linney with £100K for 4%
● Lost My Name has shipped to 136 countries worldwide and has sold over 600,000 copies

Source: Lost My Name Press Release

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