YouTube acquires two-year old Indian video commerce startup simsim

YouTube acquires two-year old Indian video commerce startup simsim
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  • simsim will continue to work independently as a separate entity even after the acquisition.
  • It has raised about $15.5 million to date from Accel, Shunwei Capital and Good Capital.
  • The Indian social commerce segment is really hot at the moment, with the entry of Tiger Global and SoftBank.
US-based search giant Google’s video streaming platform YouTube has announced the acquisition of Indian video commerce platform simsim on Tuesday, July 20. The firms have not disclosed any financial details of the deal.

simsim -- founded by Amit Bagaria, Kunal Suri, and Saurabh Vashishtha in June 2019 -- is an e-commerce platform that helps small businesses transaction to the digital economy using videos and content creation. The company connects local businesses, influencers and customers.

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“We started simsim with the mission of helping users across India shop online with ease, enabled through small sellers and brands showcasing and selling their products using the power of content by trusted influencers. Being a part of the YouTube and Google ecosystem furthers simsim in its mission,” the company’s co-founders said in a joint statement.

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simsim will continue to work independently as a separate entity even after the acquisition. YouTube, however, is now finding ways to showcase simsim offers to its viewers.

“For over 15 years, small businesses have used YouTube to expand their presence online -- and many of them use YouTube to reach customers outside of their local community, from Interior Designers to Silk Saree sellers. By bringing simsim and YouTube together, our goal is to help small businesses and retailers in India reach new customers in even more powerful ways,” Gautam Anand, vice president of YouTube Asia Pacific, said in a blog post.

simsim has raised about $15.5 million to date from marquee investors like Accel, Xiaomi’s Shunwei Capital and Good Capital.

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The India social commerce segment is really hot at the moment, especially after the entry of Meesho in the unicorn club in April 2021. A unicorn, in startup parlance, is a private firm valued at or more than $1 billion.

Earlier this month, DealShare announced a $144 million funding round led by Tiger Global and co-led by WestBridge Capital, Alpha Wave Incubation and Z3Partners. In June, CityMall raised a $22 million funding round led by General Catalyst and Jungle Ventures, with participation from existing investors Accel, Elevation Capital (formerly known as SAIF Partners) and WaterBridge Ventures.

Meesho, on the other hand, has raised $515 million to date from SoftBank, Facebook and others. The company had raised $300 million at a valuation of $2 billion.

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