Hong Kong-based Celebrity Social Network AliveNotDead.com Has Been Acquired by Mobile Communication Platform Mig33


Did you know that Hong Kong actor/producer/director Daniel Wu (吳彥祖) was a startup guy?

The startup he co-founded Alivenotdead.com has been acquired by mig33 for an undisclosed sum on Wednesday.

Founded in 2007 by Wu and a group of Hong Kong artists and a few Rotten Tomatoes founders – Alivenotdead is a Facebook-like platform where celebrities and artists alike can connect with their fans boasting a global database of 1,800 artists, including prominent artists Jet Li and Nicholas Tse. Cut from the same social cloth is mobile-focused mig33 which, in its mini blog feature, has seen over 180,000 daily active users in its operations across emerging markets in Asia, Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa.


We had a chat with Raffi Kamalian, COO turned CEO of Alivenotdead to get his thoughts on the acquisition.

Similar to the way Alivenotdead operates, mig33’s complimentary business model also lets artists such as actors and musicians cultivate their fan base – albeit from a different approach: while Alivenotdead is a web portal featuring forum-style social networking, mig33 is a smartphone-based social network with gaming and private messaging.

So what will the union of these like-minded companies produce? “We mostly monetize our artist database through job bookings, social media marketing and event related campaigns, mig33 monetizes primarily via the purchase of virtual goods,” said Raffi. “The key fit is that they’ve found that one of the biggest drivers of purchase of virtual goods is artist-related activities [such as] chats, contests and exclusive contents. And we have a database of about 1,800 artists from around the world that we can introduce into this platform.”


According to Raffi, Alivenotdead and mig33 had been in talks for less than six months before signing the deal, and that included the time to do the paperwork. While Raffi wasn’t able to disclose the transaction amount, he said that the deal will be beneficial to Alivenotdead’s investors and co-founders as mig33 is applying for an IPO on the Australian Exchange in a few months.

As for Alivenotdead’s future, Raffi says that the only way is up. “Anyone who knows me, knows that I really love my work – so I’m very pleased to have the opportunity to continue to grow the alive online artist community with the resources afforded from being part of a larger company with a larger geographic footprint.”

It’s been an amazing ride for the AliveNotDead team – have a look at this video celebrating their 1-year birthday back in May 2008:

Alivenotdead on Startbase.HK: Alivenotdead 

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  1. Great to see an exit for a Hong Kong startup and I am proud to have been an early investor in this business! Go HK startups! :)