Indian startup Inshorts, which operates a similar news aggregator service, has raised $60 million in a new financing round, as its two-year-old bet — the launch of a new social media app called Public — continues to impress, the startup said. ClearTips confirmed Thursday.
Y Capital led the new round in InShorts, which has raised $140 million over the past year. According to three people familiar with the matter, the new investment values the startup at about $550 million, up from a valuation of about $250 million in a $41 million fund in March and a valuation of $125 million in September last year.
Azhar Iqbal, co-founder and chief executive of InShorts, confirmed the size of the round and the lead investor, but declined to comment on valuation. The startup counts Addition, Tiger Global, SIG, A91 and Tanglin Venture Partners among its investors.
“The world is changing every minute, and each of us has an inherent desire to stay updated about these changes,” he said in a brief statement. “Both the InShorts app and the public app are intended to help some of these people keep themselves informed and we are thrilled to have V Capital on our journey.”
InShorts is a popular aggregator app that summarizes news articles in 60 words and covers a wide range of topics including tech and business. But it is arguably the startup’s expansion into the social media category that has helped it scale and attract so many high-profile investors.
Launched two years back, the public app has already emerged as one of the most popular social apps in the South Asian country. Location-based social networks connect individuals with the people around them. Think of people living in the same society, or people living in malls or even a few miles from each other.
The app, which is available in several major Indian languages (including Hindi, Bengali, Punjabi, Telugu, Tamil, Kannada, Malayalam, Odia, Assamese, Gujarati and Marathi), allows shop owners to run e-commerce, and with one works as well. Classifieds, entertainment and recruitment platform.
“We are excited to partner with Azhar and team to build one of the largest content platforms out of India, driving two market-leading properties with a rapidly growing user base. We look forward to working closely with the company and the team as it enters the next phase of scaling up,” Vamsi Duvvuri, Partner, Y Capital, said in a statement.