Buzzfeed might have some problems on the horizon. The clickbait company fell a staggering $80 million short of the projected revenues last year, and reportedly will slash its projections for 2016 in half.
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However, people are still asking the same question: can that goofy website that publishes things like "What Your Dog Soulmate Is" be worth $1.5 billion?
According to numbers gathered by CNN Money, that could be the case.
The site made $170 million in revenue in 2015, which is short of the projected $250 million, according to a source. It was then reported that the initial 2016 projections of $500 million was halved to $250 million.
This news comes as a major shot against the company that revolutionized the way internet companies make money. The value skyrocketed in the last few years due to investments from venture capitalists and legacy media companies. This might spell trouble for the industry of digital companies like BuzzFeed, Vice, and Mashable.
According to a spokesperson from Buzzfeed "much" of the information that is in the media is "significantly incorrect." However, they wouldn't provide specifics either. It was said that the company is "very pleased with where BuzzFeed is today and where it will be tomorrow," and "very comfortable with where the digital content world is going and I think we are well positioned."
The highly valued company may be facing limitations, partly due to the way it creates branded content for advertisers. Though the company jumped from being worth $850 million in 2014 to $1.5 billion in 2015, due largely to an investment from NBCUniversal, it shows signs of slowing down.
Most of the traffic to BuzzFeed comes from YouTube, Facebook, Snapchat, and Twitter, but traffic to the Buzzfeed-owned platforms hasn't been growing in recent months.
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The fear is that readers (and buyers for those with things to advise) have other content creation outlets and are looking for more novel content. The need for clicks on advertisements, not just the presence of them, is slowing down the website's income.