The acquisition underscores Dailyhunt’s strategy of attracting new users, residing in the real ‘Bharat’ – the tier 2, 3 and 4 Indian cities and towns, the company said in a statement.
“The latest acquisition of LocalPlay is a part of our strategic focus to penetrate the next billion users of Bharat and build deep sustainable moats around our business and will position us even better as the go-to destination for local language content in India,” said Virendra Gupta, Founder, Dailyhunt. According to Gupta hyperlocal content is still largely untapped in the country.
Last year, Dailyhunt roped in former Facebook India head Umang Bedi as President to scale up the revenues and user base of the platform, at a time when it saw growth decelerate. Ver se Innovation, which owns Dailyhunt has seen its revenue fall to Rs126.2 crore in fiscal 2018 from Rs132.9 crore in 2017, regulatory filings indicate even as losses went up 11% to Rs 285.7 crore. Cash and cash equivalents at the end of the fiscal year ending March 2018 stood at Rs 80 crore. It however, raised $6 million in September last year from existing investor Falcon Edge.
Local language content is one of the largest and untapped opportunities in the Indian internet landscape. With an online population of 500 million in 2017, India has one of the fastest growing internet populations in the world. A report by KPMG and Google, noted 9 out of 10 new internet users between 2016 and 2021 will use local languages. With the surge of smartphone and internet penetration across India, startups targeting the next 100 million users by building products for them to communicate, entertain and discuss in their local language have come to be the center of attention, with top venture capital investors also making early stage bets on companies including Circle.news, Manch, Lokal among others.