Dailyhunt, Josh parent VerSe Innovation raises over $450 million, doubles valuation

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Dailyhunt, Josh parent VerSe Innovation raises over $450 million, doubles valuation
<p>Dailyhunt founders Umang Bedi (L) and Virendra Gupta (R) <br></p>Dailyhunt
  • The Series I round included new investors like Siguler Guff, Baillie Gifford and others.
  • The company claims to have doubled its valuation since February 2021.
  • It claims to have raised a total of $650 million in the first half of 2021.
VerSe Innovation, the parent company of content aggregator unicorn Dailyhunt and short video app Josh, has raised $450 million from both new and existing investors.

The Series I round included new investors like Siguler Guff, Baillie Gifford, affiliates of Carlyle Asia Partners Growth II and others. Besides this, existing investors Sofina Group, Qatar Investment Authority and BCap also participated in the round. Avendus Capital was the exclusive financial advisor to VerSe Innovation on the transaction.

The company claims to have doubled its valuation compared to February 2021. Prior to this, the company had raised $200 million, between December 2020 and February 2021, from Alpha Wave Ventures, Glade Brook Capital Partners, Google, Microsoft and QIA.

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With this latest funding round, VerSe innovation has now raised about $650 million in the first half of 2021.

The company says that it will use this funding to further develop its AI/machine learning (ML) and data science capabilities to strengthen its position across all user retention and engagement metrics.

In addition, it will be looking to further incorporate monetisation tools like e-commerce and live streaming to support the 50 million local content creators. The company claims to have over 80 billion video plays per month.

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VerSe Innovation claims that content aggregator Dailyhunt has over 300 million monthly active users (MAU), who watch content in 14 languages from a licenced creator ecosystem of over 100,000 content partners and individual content creators.

Short video platform Josh, which was launched in 2020 post the TikTok ban, has over 115 million MAUs and 56 million daily active users. It competes with other platforms like Moj, MX TakaTak and other new players in the segment that came into existence post the Chinese app ban of June 2020.

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