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Date Apr 23, 2012
Source TA

Answers Expands Knowledge Leadership Across the Web, Mobile and Social Platforms

Answers Receives Minority Investment from TA Associates to Further Enhance Value Proposition

BOSTON – Answers, the world’s leading destination for Q&A content, today announced a significant minority investment from TA Associates, a leading global growth private equity firm, that will enable further expansion of its knowledge leadership across web, mobile and social platforms. Terms of the investment were not disclosed. With this investment, Answers will expand its focus on delivering more personalized, social and engaging experiences that inform consumers through Q&A, user-generated content, vertical search and social media. Answers previously raised capital from Summit Partners, which maintains an ownership stake in the company.

“With an attractive portfolio of content and leading brands across a variety of platforms, Answers has continued to innovate driving strong growth,” said Hythem T. El-Nazer, a Director at TA Associates. “We are pleased to complete this investment and look forward to working closely with the company’s talented management team to further build value.” Both Hythem T. El-Nazer, and Elizabeth de Saint-Aignan, a Senior Vice President at TA Associates, will join the Board of Answers.

“We’re excited to remain as a significant investor in Answers and welcome TA’s experience and help in growing the business,” said C.J. Fitzgerald, a Managing Director at Summit Partners who remains on Answers’ Board of Directors along with Peter Rottier, a Principal at Summit who will serve as a Board Observer. “Answers perfectly fits the Summit Partners investment profile as a rapidly growing, highly scalable business run by an exceptional management team. We are committed to supporting Answers’ growth strategy.”

Answers is a social media knowledge engine that connects and engages real people. Answers harnesses the knowledge from its vast community of online experts, syndicated sites and social media platforms to connect consumers with the most timely and relevant information. Since 1998, Answers has built the web’s largest community-generated social knowledge platform with more than 150 million users and more than 15 billion answers. Answers’ social media apps have 35 million monthly active users and 15 million daily content submissions. The site is ranked among the top 20 Internet destinations in the United States.

“Answers is the industry’s top destination for Q&A content and we’re fortunate to have TA Associates as an investor,” said David Karandish, CEO of Answers. “Working with an experienced Internet growth equity investor with geographic reach and success working with management teams will be invaluable to our company as we continue to consolidate our leadership position in this dynamic marketplace.”

Answers’ products are at the intersection between search and social. They combine category-specific content from consumers and authoritative experts, decision tools and highly-tuned search technologies to create organized decision marketplaces for Q&A, social networking and vertical content. Consumers can ask questions, provide answers to existing questions, and search for Q&A topics that fellow community members have created. Its social platform allows consumers to create, publish and share user-generated content from product reviews to photos.

About Answers
Established in 1998, Answers is the industry’s top destination for Q&A content (source: Quantcast). One-third of all U.S. Internet users regularly visit Answers.com for information on virtually everything. The Answers platform integrates and surfaces the best content from subject matter experts, community members, social networks, and Internet databases to create the most multidimensional resource on the Web. Answers content is available everywhere: on the web, mobile or social networks. The Answers platform has over 15 billion answers, which is 10 billion more than its closest competitor. It is also home to a community of 150 million users, with an estimated 10,000 new registered users per hour. For more information about Answers, please visit www.answers.com.

About TA Associates
Founded in 1968, TA Associates is one of the largest and most experienced middle-market growth private equity firms. The firm has invested in over 400 companies globally and has raised more than $16 billion in capital. With offices in Boston, Menlo Park, London, Mumbai and Hong Kong, TA Associates leads buyouts and minority recapitalizations of profitable growth companies in the technology, financial services, business services, healthcare and consumer industries. More information about TA Associates can be found at www.ta.com.

About Summit Partners
Summit Partners (www.summitpartners.com) is a growth equity firm that invests in rapidly growing companies. Founded in 1984, Summit has raised more than $14 billion in capital and provides equity and credit for growth, recapitalizations, and management buyouts. Summit has invested in more than 340 companies across a range of industries. These companies have completed more than 125 public offerings, and in excess of 130 have been acquired through strategic mergers and sales. Summit Partners has offices in Boston, Palo Alto, London and Mumbai.