Former Facebook marketing VP launches media company

Called :betr, the platform focuses on Gen Z health and wellness.

NEW YORK: Former Facebook exec Tom Arrix is building a new media platform called :betr aimed at Gen Z.

The platform — intended to "unlock the development and wellness of GenZ" — will be launched in September, according to a release from the company.

Content on the platform, which will consist of a website, mobile app and social media presence, will focus on uplifting stories about health, wellness and personal development, all from a Gen Z perspective.

According to a company spokeswoman, the underpinnings of the new media brand are ScoutDay, a baseball recruiting platform previously owned and managed by Alex Tuccio, :betr’s head of growth, and Blueprint, a student athletics-focused platform owned by Arrix.

"They had similar missions about driving the wellness and development pieces for a specific demographic," said Arrix, who was Facebook’s North American VP of global marketing solutions from 2006-13. "Blueprint was more on the student athlete side and Scoutday was more specific within the baseball world."

Athletics will remain a part of the platform, Arrix said, but will become one of several channels or feeds alongside topics such as high school and college readiness, mental health, financial literacy and social media awareness.

Arrix said that while he has bootstrapped the company to this point, he will likely approach the venture capital markets for additional funding later in the year.

Revenue for the platform will initially come from brand partnerships, but Arrix said the company is building in a capability for premium subscriptions and may offer wellness and development resources to high schools and universities.

"We’ll be developing content, including educational topics and podcasts, that allow us the ability to drive into a subscription model, if the time is right," he said. "If you look at the world of education, and especially universities, offering development and wellness resources is a major challenge."

Arrix said :betr will create its own content and also work closely with Gen Z creators to provide information with an uplifting tone.

"What we are not creating is another social media presence or an app," he said. "It’s not surprising that kids are spending an increasing amount of time in social environments. What we are trying to do is bring positivity to the environments where our audience already exists."

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