Early Stage

The Premier Independent Tech Publication.

The Premier Independent Tech Publication.


Raised to Date: Raised: $1,069,986

Total Commitments ($USD)



Start Date


Close Date


Min. Goal
Max. Goal
Min. Investment


Security Type

Equity - Common

SEC Filing Type

RegCF    Open SEC Filing

Price Per Share


Pre-Money Valuation


Rolling Commitments ($USD)

Reporting Date


Days Remaining
% of Min. Goal
% of Max. Goal
Likelihood of Max
Avg. Daily Raise


# of Investors


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Media, Entertainment & Publishing

Tech Sector


Eagle, Colorado

HackerNoon is here to write about the real deal. They’re an independent tech blog with content written by tech professionals. Their team includes over 7,000 contributing writers, and they have over 200,000 daily visitors with over 8M monthly page views. HackerNoon publishes about 20 stories a day, and they’ve been consistently profitable for 2.5 years. What makes HackerNoon unique is that they run on sponsorship promotions whom they carefully vet and select. You won’t find any personalized ads on HackerNoon. This system them free, and keeps the reader’s experience intact-- without feeling like they’re being targeted for a pair of shoes or a new kitchen gadget.
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Raise History

Offering Name Close Date Platform Valuation/Cap Total Raised Security Type Status Reg Type
HackerNoon 05/14/2023 Self Managed $50,000,000 $250,000 Equity - Common Funded RegD 506(b)
HackerNoon 03/03/2019 StartEngine $6,404,200 $1,069,986 Equity - Common Funded RegCF
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Price per Share History

Note: Share prices shown in earlier rounds may not be indicative of any stock splits.

Valuation History

Revenue History

Note: Revenue data points reflect the latest of either the most recent fiscal year's financials, or updated revenues directly from the founder, at each raise's close date.

Employee History

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Analyst Report Analyst Report Methodology Article


At the time of publication, November 19th, HackerNoon had raised $628K of a $1.07M Max Goal.

The HackerNoon team has been selected as a “Top Deal” by KingsCrowd. This distinction is reserved for deals selected into the top 10% of our deal diligence funnel. If you have questions regarding our deal diligence and selection methodology, please reach out to hello@kingscrowd.com.

Check out our discussion with CEO & COO David & Linh Smooke that was conducted as part of our due diligence process HERE.

Next Section: Other


Blogs are an ever-present feature of the internet, with blogs about every topic imaginable. But, with websites like WordPress facilitating the ease of website launching, blogs are becoming less about high quality publications and more a question of how the optimize monetization of blog content.

Rather than heavily vet each publication, websites are now focusing their attention on volume, pushing out unoriginal and uninspiring clickbait articles that peddle a repetitive narrative.

HackerNoon addresses this issue by hosting a tech blog with uncensored stories and opinions by tech professionals with first-hand experiences. The company publishes around 20 stories a day, discussing a wide variety of tech-related topics. Just today, topics ranged from the deployment of machine learning and trading algorithms in pricing cryptocurrencies to an overview of dynamic models and simulations.

Next Section: Other

Business Model  

Their revenue comes from sponsors rather than traditional advertisements. Tech companies like Amazon’s Bot Division and educational sites like Edx and Full Stack Academy sponsor HackerNoon to promote their businesses through advertisements that read like billboards: present and clear, but non-intrusive and minimalistic. This model seems to be a recipe for success for a few reasons.

 Sponsors have enough incentive to invest in sponsorship packages on HackerNoon. Especially on a website exclusively dedicated to one subject matter with a self-selecting user base, traditional personalized advertisements are unnecessary and may be less effective than sponsorships, who are able to tailor their content toward an entire demographic without an issue.

 Even more, since companies that sponsor HackerNoon are usually tech-related, sponsors can express what they intend on saying without any misleading clickbait titles. Advertisements on the other hand are often unrelated to subject matter and often detract from the advertiser’s credibility and brand trustworthiness.

 This model is also beneficial for HackerNoon, since intrusive advertisements can also lessen the website’s credibility and weaken the readers’ experience when on HackerNoon.

 Since HackerNoon’s brand is more about individuals with a genuine interest and passion in technology, traditional advertisements are inferior to the current model with sponsorship. Even more, sponsors are much more reliable sources of income than short-term advertisements, and HackerNoon has achieved a 52% renewal rate among its sponsors. Not only is HackerNoon maintaining a steady revenue stream, but the company is clearly offering value to its sponsors, hence the high renewal rate.

Next Section: Other


Since the company’s inception in January, 2016, HackerNoon has been steadily growing. Weekly website viewership grew from 100K in October 2016 to about 1M in October 2018. Between the period of May 2018 – July 2018, the company was visited 43 million times, 20.5 million of which were by unique visitors. Compared to its competitors, HackerNoon is more effective at viewership retention as well, with the average unique visitor visiting twice and with a bounce rate of 55.7%.

These statistics suggest that visitors are not only finding HackerNoon’s website organically, but also that new visitors tend to stay for longer and are less likely to close the website at first glance. This is a testament to HackerNoon’s success at developing quality content, and the viability of their business concept.

Next Section: Other

Product Roadmap

Product Roadmap

 So far, HackerNoon is hosted on Medium, a publishing platform. However, in mid July, Medium began banning third party ads on its partner websites to try and raise website content. While HackerNoon has similar goals, their third party sponsorships were included in the ban, and HackerNoon’s revenues decreased dramatically.

To remedy this the company is working on a few initiatives to create new revenue streams. They currently host the HackerNoon podcast and are continuing to build out a job board. These products are both very closely related to the company’s central message of passion for technology, and are also synergistic with the current website viewer base.

Naturally, individuals who are already on a website dedicated to current events in the tech world are key ideal candidates for any companies hoping to hire ambitious young talent.

HackerNoon’s job board is also promising considering the website’s viewer demographics. In comparison to internet averages, HackerNoon’s viewers tend to be between the ages of 18-34, with a college degree, and with a more affluent background. These are prime candidates for tech companies, since this demographic is generally more responsive to new opportunities in the tech world and have the educational background necessary for high level work. The job board already has a few participating companies, and can be expected to grow as viewership continues to increase.

But, while other revenue streams like its new podcast and job board show promise, a large part of the organization’s income comes from its sponsorships. With Medium’s restrictions on third party advertisements, Hac ker Noon is hoping to create its own content management system with the funds raised from this round.

The company has already pre-sold sponsorships for 2019, meaning that there is a reliable demand for HackerNoon’s sponsorship packages, and that the expensive capital expenditure related to building their own website has a basis for creation. 

The company also hopes to redesign its content generation process moving forward. This involves adding features for three different kinds of contributors to the website. Just like on any other forum, anyone can submit stories for publication after an editorial review process, and if a writer proves them self capable of consistently writing quality articles, they can become a verified writer.

Verified writers are writers with a proven area of expertise, and can publish stories automatically without review. There will also be community editors who are responsible for curating entire pages, and can choose to edit or distribute stories that are related to their field of expertise. 

Consistent quality content generation is necessary for any publication that hopes to grow. In HackerNoon’s case, where viewership is definitely growing, this content generation process needs to be properly developed to lessen the load on management, and allow the community to have a natural checks and balances process.

Next Section: Other


HackerNoon is currently valued at $6.4M, with no prior raises or loan history. They have a record of healthy cash flows and positive profits since it’s conception. While its initial P/L was less stable, its revenue growth from Q2 2017 to Q2 2018 is significant and steady, which seems to correlate well with its viewership growth.

Though the drop in profit in Q3 2018 may seem daunting, a large part of its revenue cut may be attributed to Medium’s ban of third parties.

Founder Profile

Founder Profile: A Hacker's Delight

At the time of publication, November 19th, HackerNoon had raised $628K of a $1.07M Max Goal.

If you follow the startup and tech scene at all, you’ve likely heard of HackerNoon. With some of the best content in tech and over 7,000 contributors, reading HackerNoon is like having an inside purview into every corner of the tech world.

HackerNoon is run by husband and wife, David and Linh Dao Smooke. Both of these individuals are amazing and I had the best time connecting with them. When you think about investing in entrepreneurs it is so crucial to invest in people you genuinely believe in.

Linh and David make that easy. With a long term vision for HackerNoon and a scrappy, capital efficient mindset, we at KingsCrowd think HackerNoon is one of the best investment opportunities that has been made available for investment via equity crowdfunding.

Read Founder Interview

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HackerNoon on StartEngine
Platform: StartEngine
Security Type: Equity - Common
Valuation: $6,404,200
Price per Share: $8.20

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