Bengaluru: VerSe Innovation, India’s biggest local language technology platform, today announced it has raised another $100 million+ in a Series H funding round led by global investors Qatar Investment Authority (QIA), the sovereign wealth fund of the State of Qatar and Glade Brook Capital Partners. Canaan Valley Capital and existing investor Sofina Group also participated in this round. The multi-million-dollar investment follows close on the heels of a $100 million+ fundraise from Google, Microsoft, and AlphaWave in December 2020.
Debuting as the first unicorn in tech for local languages last year, VerSe Innovation has seen tremendous
investor interest in Josh since its launch. With this new infusion of capital, the Company is adding QIA and Glade Brook Capital Partners to a stellar line up of existing blue-chip investors that include Google, Microsoft, AlphaWave, Goldman Sachs, Sofina Group, Lupa Systems, Matrix Partners India, Sequoia Capital India, Falcon Edge Capital and Omidyar Network, among others. Avendus Capital was the exclusive financial advisor to VerSe Innovation on the transaction.
In a show of extraordinary confidence in the potential of its made-in-India, short-video app Josh, this funding sets VerSe Innovation on a strategic expansion path for its family of apps focused on Bharat. It also comes at a time when India embarks on a journey of economic recovery, underscored by a laser focus on an Aatmanirbhar Bharat. VerSe Innovation plans to deploy this capital steadily in the continued scaling up of made-in-Bharat-for-Bharat-by-Bharat-in-12-Bhartiya-languages-hosted-in-Bharat short video platform Josh. This will include the augmentation of local language content offerings, the development of its content creator ecosystem, innovation in AI and ML, and more importantly, the creation of opportunity for India’s vast talent pool.
Josh represents a confluence of India’s top 200+ best creators, the 10 biggest music labels, 15+ million UGC creators, best in class content creation tools, the hottest entertainment formats, and formidable user demographics. Josh has been consistently rated as the leading Indian short-video app in India on the Play store. Currently, Josh is the fastest growing and most engaged short-video app in India with over 85 million MAUs (Monthly Active Users), 40 million DAUs (Daily Active Users), and 1.5+ billion video plays per day.
VerSe Innovation’s proprietary technology platform also powers various technology solutions including 300 million + users on Dailyhunt to consume content in their local language. Dailyhunt is India’s #1 vernacular content platform offering content artifacts every day in 14 languages. Content on Dailyhunt is sourced from a licensed creator ecosystem of over 100,000 content partners and individual content creators. This solid business foundation and capital infusion now set the Company on a path of rapid growth, as it explores building a family of apps and expanding across other international geographies to extend its broad-based tech platforms in serving similar unmet content needs of local language audiences globally.