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Newshunt raises 250 crore in Series C

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Based in India, Newshunt is a local language mobile app that has raised 250 crore in Series C funding. Falcon Edge Capital led this round of funding with participation from Matrix Partners India, Sequoia Capital India and Omidyar Network. More details below:

PRESS RELEASE

Bangalore, India – February 5, 2014: Newshunt, India’s leading local language mobile app, today announced its Series C funding led by New York-based hedge fund Falcon Edge Capital completing their fund raise process.

Existing investors Matrix Partners India, Sequoia Capital India and Omidyar Network also participated in this round of funding. In September 2014, Newshunt had raised its Series B round of funding led by Sequoia Capital.

Newshunt is the platform of choice for local language mobile Internet users with over 75 million downloads till date. It has the widest collection of regional content in over 12 languages and is the #1 app for local language users in India across app stores. The recent foray into eBooks, providing a world class experience in local languages, has created a vibrant marketplace for publishers with over 10 million local language eBooks downloaded till date by over 2 million users, 40% of which are paid users. Users pay for downloads through Newshunt’s proprietary payment platform iPayy that is now also being used by third party developers for micro-transactions through carrier billing. In the last six months, almost 4 million unique customers have used the iPayy platform for payments.

“The next 500 million mobile Internet users that will emerge in India will largely be local language first – they will create and consume content and services in local languages. Our vision is to be a dominant part of their first Internet experience and serve these users with world-class products starting with Newshunt, eBooks, iPayy and many more to come. As part of this journey, we wish to partner with the entire local language ecosystem and work with passionate and talented entrepreneurs in building the first real, large scale Made in India, Made for India platform. We are excited to welcome Falcon Edge to Newshunt as we continue to further grow our platform.” said Viru Gupta, founder and CEO of Newshunt.

“We’re privileged to be associated with Viru and the team at Newshunt and iPayy. We believe the local language Internet is set for an inflection and Newshunt will be at the center of this ecosystem. We encourage all stakeholders in the ecosystem to partner with Newshunt to create new digital content and services, get them discovered and monetized through this platform. We welcome Falcon Edge to the Newshunt partnership” said Vikram Vaidyanathan, Managing Director, Matrix Partners India.

About Newshunt:

Newshunt is the flagship product of Verse Innovation Pvt. Ltd. Newshunt offers news from over 100 news sources in 12 languages with over 25,000+ articles everyday. iPayy is a unique micro-transaction platform based on carrier billing with access to 700M subscribers across 5 major telcos in India and currently used by 300 digital goods merchants. The company has presence in India, Middle East, and Africa with over 150 employees. Further information is available at www.newshunt.com

About Falcon Edge Capital:

Falcon Edge Capital was founded in 2011 by Rick Gerson and Navroz Udwadia. Falcon Edge Capital utilizes fundamental research and knowledge of local markets and industries to identify asymmetric risk-reward investment opportunities.

About Matrix Partners India:

Matrix Partners India is an investment firm with INR 3,000 crore under management. The firm invests in companies targeting the Indian consumer market at the seed, early and early growth stages. The firm has invested in several market leading mobile Internet companies including Birds Eye Systems (hyperlocal social transport), LimeRoad (social commerce marketplace), Mswipe (mobile POS), Ola (India’s largest cab network), Quikr (online classifieds), Red Monster (mobile social gaming), Stayzilla (stays marketplace), and Woo (social matchmaking) among others. Matrix Partners has a global network of funds investing in the US, China and India with $3 billion under management. Further information is available at www.matrixpartners.in