Thousands of YouTube partners now make six figures a year

Thousands of YouTube partners are making over $100,000 a year, according to Google (s GOOG) SVP and Chief Business Officer Nikesh Arora. The number was shared during Google’s second quarter earnings call on Thursday, where Arora pointed to YouTube as an acquisition that has paid off for the company.
YouTube had previously put the number of six-figure earners in the hundreds. Arora recalled during the call how the press used to doubt whether YouTube could ever achieve a successful business model when the search giant acquired the site in 2006. “I think we can declare we found our model,” he said.
Google (s GOOG) doesn’t usually talk much about YouTube during its earnings calls, and it stuck with its tradition Thursday to not break out any revenue numbers for YouTube. Instead, Arora pointed to business highlights, including the site’s partnership with NBC to stream the Olympics within the U.S. Arora also mentioned the YouTube upfront event, which he said was attended by 1,300 people.
Google has been increasingly investing into programming on YouTube. The site unveiled a premium channel initiative late last year that included a reported $100 million in advances both for YouTube stars and traditional media brands who took their assets to YouTube as a result. And earlier Thursday, it announced that it is rewarding some 1,500 YouTube producers for successes with their channels on the site, with 80 of them receiving a golden play button, and everyone getting $500 gift certificates that can be put toward buying video equipment.