Weeks after the exit of short video platform TikTok, India is yet to see a startup that can take up its market share. Amid the flood of TikTok copycats, homegrown social media company ShareChat, which has had experience in the local content space, has pitched its platform Moj as a competitor to the Chinese app.
Bengaluru based Mohalla Tech, which operates ShareChat on Thursday announced that it has secured $40 million in a growth round from returning investors Twitter, Lightspeed Venture Partners, SAIF Partners and India Quotient.
The company says it will use the capital to drive the growth of its recently launched short video platform Moj.
New investors in the round include the family trust of CEO and chairman of Hero MotoCorp Pawan Munjal and Ajay Shridhar Shriram who has invested through the DCM Shriram Promoters Family Office, according to a statement shared by the company.
With this round, the total equity capital raised by the company stands at $264 million.
“ShareChat is on a rapid growth path and is spearheading the growth of the Indic language Indian social media landscape. Our short-video platform Moj has been on an explosive growth trajectory since its launch,” Ankush Sachdeva, CEO at ShareChat said in the statement.
“This funding will help us further invest into our product development, ML capabilities and helping the creator community,” he added.
ByteDance owned short video app TikTok was banned by the Indian government on June 29 along with 58 other apps of Chinese origin citing threat to national security.
ShareChat claims over 160 million monthly active users (MAU) on its app while Moj has 80 million MAUs. The company claims that users spend over 34 minutes on the Moj video platform which is available in 15 Indian languages. TikTok saw some 120 million monthly active users in the country at the end of 2019.
ShareChat has also been aggressive in acquiring companies in the entertainment space to augment its product offerings. In 2020 alone it has acquired hyperlocal news platform Circle Internet, meme sharing platform Memer and ecommerce platform Elanic.
Riding on the wave of TikTok’s ban in India, other short video apps from the country such as Chingari and Mitron have raised equity capital in August. While Chingari raised $1.3 million from AngelList India and others, Mitron raised $5 million in Series A round from Nexus Venture Partners.