ShareChat valued at $2.1 billion in $502 million fundraise – TechCrunch

ShareChat stated on Thursday it has raised a brand new financing spherical that values it at over $2 billion, becoming a member of four other local startups in attaining the unicorn standing this week.

The Indian social community stated it has raised $502 million in a brand new financing spherical — Series E — led by Tiger Global that valued ShareChat at $2.1 billion, up from about $650 million final yr. Snap and present traders Twitter and Lightspeed Venture Partners additionally participated in the spherical, stated ShareChat, which has raised about $765 million up to now.

The six-year-old startup started participating with traders for brand spanking new funds about 10 months in the past, and explored a full buy out deal with Twitter, which didn’t materialize, TechCrunch reported earlier.

ShareChat, which claims to have over 160 million customers, provides its social community app in 15 Indian languages and has a big following in small Indian cities and cities, or what enterprise capitalist Sajith Pai of Blume Ventures refer as “India 2.” Very few gamers in the Indian startup ecosystem have a attain to this phase of this inhabitants, which because of customers from even smaller cities and villages — known as “India 3” — getting on-line has expanded in latest years.

Last yr, the Bangalore-based startup launched Moj — a short-form video app that it says has already amassed over 80 million month-to-month lively customers — to fill the void left after New Delhi banned TikTok, which counted India as its largest worldwide market previous to being blocked. Snap inked a deal with ShareChat to combine its Camera Kit into the Indian short-video app earlier this yr. (Thursday’s deal is Snap’s first funding in an Indian startup.)

Moj competes with a handful of gamers together with Times Internet’s MX TakaTak, which at the moment leads the market with over 100 million month-to-month lively customers, and Glance’s Roposo and DailyHunt’s Josh — each of which received funding from Google late last year. The search big was additionally in talks to speculate in ShareChat late final yr, TechCrunch reported earlier.

ShareChat’s lively customers (ShareChat)

“When we saw a large vacuum emerge on June 29 with a lot of short-video apps exiting the market — we knew this opportunity was for us. There were millions of short-video creators already trained for creating that content supply. The real game was therefore going to be on building the most relevant feed for the user and we were the only Indian company that had built a world-class feed recommendation system for short-form content,” wrote Ankush Sachdeva, co-founder and chief govt of ShareChat in a weblog submit. “We built the app in 30 hours. Scaled it to 120mn MAUs in 9 months.”

ShareChat, which started its life on Facebook and WhatsApp teams, has began to experiment with monetization in latest years. On its app, as an illustration, ShareChat permits commerce platforms to work together with prospects through its audio chat rooms. It additionally quietly launched a fantasy sports app called Jeet early final yr, as reported first by TechCrunch.

“We are at a significant inflection point in our company’s journey — as the internet penetration further deepens in India we are well-positioned to expand our ecosystem of products to 1 Billion+ MAUs cumulatively. We have seen how large the short-video market is in China — with around 80% of the entire Internet population using one of the short-video products(Douyin, Kuaishou etc) daily,” wrote Sachdeva.

ShareChat is the ninth Indian startup to turn out to be a unicorn this yr — and fifth this week. Social commerce Meesho turned a unicorn on Monday, fintech agency CRED on Tuesday and e-pharmacy agency PharmEasy and Groww on Thursday.

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