Delhi-based Addazz Online Services Pvt Ltd that operates PicsDream, an online marketplace for photographs, has raised an undisclosed amount in an angel funding round led by chairman and managing director of Quatrro Global Services Raman Roy.
The round also saw participation from Ankit Nagori, former chief business officer at Flipkart, and Harish Natrajan, former CEO of Bausch & Lomb, India. Other angel investors include Vipin Chawla, co-founder of US-based Instant Systems Inc; Vikram Sud, a former Citibank executive; and Baskar Subramaniyan and Madhavan Sreenivasan, co-founders of Servion.
In a statement, the firm said the funds will be used for marketing to enhance its community of photographers and invest in product and technology development.
"The timing is right to create a marketplace for photographers as there is an increasing interest in photography, given that more than a trillion photographs are clicked every year in India. This space holds tremendous promise and bundling services with the product would be a winning combination" said Roy.
Founded in November 2015 by Mahesh Nair, PicsDream offers photographers a portal to store, showcase, share and monetise their work. It also connects photographers with buyers of photographs. Besides, it offers the option of getting the photograph printed on a format the buyer prefers and get it delivered to his/her doorstep.
An alumnus of XLRI, Nair started his career with IT services firm HCL Technologies. Prior to starting PicsDream, he was associated with BPO firm Spectramind, which was founded by Raman Roy but was later acquired by Wipro, and edu-tech startup Touchstone Systems and.
"Most photographers in India are not able to leverage and market their work beyond sharing it on social network and gathering likes and shares. We are trying to build a platform where photographers can realise their potential," Nair told Techcircle.in
According to Nair, the local photography space is dominated by stock sites which take photos that are more suited for the advertising market. There is a good market for photographs as wall art and there is a potential customer base out there," he said.
In the broader photography space, a couple of startups recently raised funding. In January this year, photography curation startup SIFTR Labs secured $150,000 (around Rs 1 crore) from investment platform Venture Catalysts.
In December last year, Bangalore-based online photography platform Canvera Digital Technologies Pvt Ltd raised $2.2 million (around Rs 15 crore) from consumer internet group Info Edge (India) Ltd.