Photo: Group Nine

Group Nine Media, which includes digital lifestyle brands like The Dodo, NowThis, Thrillist and Seeker, has raised $50 million from Discovery Inc. and German publishing giant Axel Springer.

Why it matters: It's one of the biggest digital media investments in the past year. Investors have been mostly bearish on digital content companies because they are hard to scale and usually aren't very profitable.

Details: The latest fundraising round brings Group Nine's total amount raised to $190 million. Both investors were involved in previous fundraising rounds and will retain a minority stake in Group Nine with Discovery as the lead investor, according to a statement.

  • The company says that the additional funds will be used for continued investments in intellectual property, presumably content, and to fuel growth of its newly launched commerce division.
  • In a statement, Discovery President and CEO David Zaslav said that Group Nine is the "standout in the evolving mobile ecosystem," suggesting that the partnership between the two companies would continue to focus on mobile-first and social media partnerships. The two companies currently jointly sell advertising campaigns.

Between the lines: The company's statement also noted that the funds will be used for "potential strategic acquisitions." Rumors have circled around Group Nine acquiring Refinery29 or merging with another large media company, like BuzzFeed, for months.

  • According to the Wall Street Journal, which first reported the news, Group Nine has also been in touch with millennial lifestyle brand Popsugar.

Be smart: The appeal of Group Nine to potential media partners is that the company is one of the top social video publishers in America. According to Group Nine, audiences spend nearly 50 million hours a month cumulatively watching content from its brands.

  • Yes, but: Last year's cheap sale of Mic brought a lot of press attention to venture capital-backed media companies, highlighting the risk that comes with raising lots of money to support ad-driven media business models.

Go deeper: An exclusive club of media unicorns survives media industry turmoil

Go deeper

Louisville officer: "Breonna Taylor would be alive" if we had served no-knock warrant

Breonna Taylor memorial in Louisville. Photo: Brandon Bell/Getty Images

Sgt. Jonathan Mattingly, the Louisville officer who led the botched police raid that caused the death of Breonna Taylor, said the No. 1 thing he wishes he had done differently is either served a "no-knock" warrant or given five to 10 seconds before entering the apartment: "Breonna Taylor would be alive, 100 percent."

Driving the news: Mattingly, who spoke to ABC News and Louisville's Courier Journal for his public interview, was shot in the leg in the initial moments of the March 13 raid. Mattingly did not face any charges after Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron said he and another officer were "justified" in returning fire to protect themselves against Taylor's boyfriend.

U.S. vs. Google — the siege begins

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The Justice Department fired the starter pistol on what's likely to be a years-long legal siege of Big Tech by the U.S. government when it filed a major antitrust suit Tuesday against Google.

The big picture: Once a generation, it seems, federal regulators decide to take on a dominant tech company. Two decades ago, Microsoft was the target; two decades before that, IBM.

Dion Rabouin, author of Markets
2 hours ago - Economy & Business

Why the stimulus delay isn't a crisis (yet)

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

If the impasse between House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the White House on a new stimulus deal is supposed to be a crisis, you wouldn't know it from the stock market, where prices continue to rise.

  • That's been in no small part because U.S. economic data has held up remarkably well in recent months thanks to the $2 trillion CARES Act and Americans' unusual ability to save during the crisis.