Dailyhunt to receive funding from Goldman Sachs: Report

Dailyhunt to receive funding from Goldman Sachs: Report
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19 Feb, 2019

Goldman Sachs Investment Partners, the venture capital arm of New York-based investment bank Goldman Sachs, will lead a $60 million (Rs 429.6 crore at current exchange rate) round in local-language content and news aggregator Dailyhunt, three persons in the know told Mint. 

The funding will likely be a part of Series E round, which saw its first tranche of $6 million (Rs 42 crore then) from New York-based hedge fund Falcon Edge, going by a TechCircle report published in September 2018.

TechCircle estimates then had shown the company as valued at $335 million (Rs 2,371 crore at that point) pre-money, which was close to its valuation from its Series D investment round pegged at around $330 million then (Rs 2,230 crore at that point). The Series D round worth $25 million was led by China’s ByteDance in 2016. 

Interestingly, ByteDance, which is backed by SoftBank and reportedly valued at $75 billion, has also invested in one of Dailyhunt’s rival, Helo.

Queries to Dailyhunt, formerly known as Newshunt, remained unanswered till the time of publishing the story.

Dailyhunt is backed by Matrix Partners India, Sequoia Capital India, Omidyar Network and ByteDance, among others.

The platform has created Dailyhunt TV for coverage of upcoming general elections, mentioned media reports. In November 2018, Dailyhunt said it was planning on upending the entertainment industry with high-quality bite-sized video content intended for “the next billion” – mostly rural folks whose online experiences overwhelmingly take place on cheap mobile phones and rock-bottom data packages.

The company was launched as Newshunt by former Nokia executives Umesh Kulkarni and Chandrashekhar Sohoni in 2009 and sold to Ver Se Innovation in 2012. It was rebranded as Dailyhunt in August 2015.

Dailyhunt reported a one per cent decline in its consolidated operating revenue to Rs 113.2 crore for the financial year 2017-18 with the shutdown of value-added services.

Discounting VAS from the base, consolidated operating revenue grew 30% during the period. Dailyhunt reported a 28.5% rise in net loss to Rs 159.4 crore during the period. Expenses increased 11.5% to Rs 285.6 crore during the period under review from Rs 256 crore in the year prior.

Dailyhunt competes with Tencent-backed NewsDog as well as Alibaba-backed UCNews, both of which focus primarily on local-language content. 

The local-language content industry has seen a spike in investor interest, including social media platforms like ShareChat bagging $100 million from a group of Chinese investors including Shunwei Capital. Recently hyper local news app Awaaz raised an undisclosed amount in funding from Matrix partners.