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The Search For Bharat: Behind Dailyhunt’s Acquisition Of Local Play

The Search For Bharat: Behind Dailyhunt’s Acquisition Of Local Play

Local Play acquisition will help Dailyhunt expand its hyperlocal presence

Dailyhunt will produce 5 Mn pieces of hyperlocal content annually

Indian media and entertainment industry would nearly double in size to $123 Bn by 2022

Bengaluru-based news and ebooks mobile app, Dailyhunt, has acquired Bengaluru-based hyperlocal video content and news content application, Local Play for an undisclosed amount.

Dailyhunt says that with this acquisition, the company is working towards attracting new users, residing in the real Bharat – tier 2, 3 and 4 Indian cities and towns.

Virendra Gupta, founder, Dailyhunt said, “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.”

Founded in 2018 by Gunjan Kejriwal and Prajwal P, LocalPlay has done significant process and product innovation for on ground news collection and production. LocalPlay had raised a seed round from Orios Venture Partners, Raveen Sastry, Sanjay Ramakrishnan, Dhimant Parekh, N Ravi Shankar and Gopinath G.

Gunjan Kejriwal, founder, Local Play, said, “ We were working on a specific use case of hyperlocal content and realised that users have broader content needs and given that Dailyhunt has the right mix of original, professionally generated and now hyperlocal news content.”

Launched in 2009 by Nokia employees Umesh Kulkarni and Chandrashekhar Sohoni, NewsHunt was acquired by Verse in 2012. In August 2015 NewsHunt rebranded itself as DailyHunt.

Currently, Dailyhunt has grown into a news and local language content application with over 155 Mn app installs offering 100K news articles in 14 languages licensed from over 800 publication partners every day. The group claims that every month has more than 50 Mn users spend over six billion minutes on the app.

The company has raised more than $122.3 Mn (INR 870 Cr) in series of investments from investors such as Sequoia Capital India, Falcon Edge Capital, Matrix Partners, Omidyar Network, and Darby Overseas Investments.

Going forward, Dailyhunt will further scale up and produce 5 Mn pieces of hyperlocal content annually, available exclusively on Dailyhunt.

Inc42’s Indian Tech Startup funding report 2018 noted that news aggregators in demand such as Inshorts and Dailyhunt recorded a combined total of 55 Mn in app downloads. The report further expects the rise of vernacular social networks and news platforms as Sharechat and Roposo continue to attract big numbers in funding.

Some of the leading challengers of Dailyhunt include Inshorts, PIPES, the GSF backed Newsbytes, Way2News, and The Quint among others. In 2018, vernacular content has been creating buzz, with several startups expanding their services to include regional languages beyond Hindi.

According to a Sharechat report, 2018 was the year when for the first time internet users in great numbers accessed social media in their regional languages and participated actively in contributing to user generated content in native languages.

A report by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and Boston Consulting Group (BCG) said that the Indian media and entertainment (M&E) industry would nearly double in size to $123 Bn (INR 8 Tn)  by 2022, clocking 11-12% CAGR between 2016 and 2022.