The fresh capital will be utilised to scale up the operations, build the largest community of content creators, intensify its presence across geographies, invest in technology for better recommendations and strengthen the overall audio OTT category globally.
Pocket FM, India’s largest audio OTT app, has raised capital worth $22.4 million in Series B funding round. Led by Lightspeed, the round also welcomed participation from a clutch of investors including Times Group and first-time investor in the company, Tanglin Venture Partners. The fresh capital will be utilised to scale up the operations, build the largest community of content creators, intensify its presence across geographies, invest in technology for better recommendations and strengthen the overall audio OTT category globally.
Founded in 2018, Pocket FM is now amongst the top OTT players in India that offers 100,000+ hours of enriching long-format content. Within three years, it has registered over 40 million downloads, 3 billion monthly listening minutes, and more than 110 minutes being spent by users daily on the app. It is amongst the top-ranking apps in the music & audio category on the Play Store. The company intends to surpass 100 million users in next six months.
Talking about the funding, Rohan Nayak, Co-founder and CEO, Pocket FM said, “We are building a robust ecosystem for Audio OTT with Pocket FM and its largest community of content creators. We are at a juncture where both Pocket FM and the overall audio OTT space are witnessing exponential growth. Audio storytelling has now become a mainstream content format for entertainment and our mission is to build Pocket FM as a global entertainment service provider. We are grateful to our investors for their continued faith and support in our vision and are very optimistic about the future.”
Commenting on the investment, Harsha Kumar, Partner at Lightspeed, said, “We are excited to back the Pocket FM team as they scale up to build the future of audio content & are looking forward to the next phase of this incredible journey. The team has constantly innovated ahead of the curve, with multiple language offerings for their short & long form audio content and in becoming the go-to destination for audio content creators”.
Expressing his views, Sankalp Gupta, Partner, Tanglin Venture Partners, said, “Pocket FM is a pioneer in the audio OTT space in India, and their approach towards democratizing audio content creation is a game-changer. The company’s stellar growth trajectory, user engagement, and retention are a testament of the consumer’s love for Pocket FM’s product. We were blown away by the deep user insights and consumer focus put forth by Rohan, Nishanth, and Prateek and are really excited to be a part of the journey. We look forward to working with the Pocket FM team towards building a large and enduring business”.
“Audio is emerging as one of the preferred mediums to consume content. It is exciting to see homegrown platforms like Pocket FM leading this innovation. Not only have they done well in India, they are also spreading their wings globally. We strongly believe that Pocket FM will continue to lead this segment globally. We are excited to be a part of this journey” said Abhishek Mitra Gupta, Managing Partner, TVentures (backed by Times Group).
At present, Pocket FM has some of the most popular audio shows in India. With top shows like ‘Ye Rishta Kaisa Hai’ and ‘Yakshini’, that have garnered over 300 million and 100 million plays respectively. Since its inception, Pocket FM has worked towards democratizing audio creation by discovering, nurturing, and promoting new talent. Today, the platform works with a thriving community of over 17,000 PUGC writers & voice artists. Before this round, Pocket FM had raised $ 650k in seed funding round and $ 5.6 million in Series A funding round.
Source: Business World