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Newshunt raises over Rs. 100 crores, eyes dominance in 500M Indian language mobile internet users

Bangalore, India - September 22, 2014: Newshunt, India’s leading local language mobile platform, today announced its Series B funding of over Rs. 100 crore led by Sequoia Capital India. Existing investors Matrix Partners India and Omidyar Network also participated significantly in this round of funding. Newshunt is the destination for local language mobile Internet users with over 14 million monthly active users and over 1.5 billion page views monthly. It has the widest collection of regional content in over 12 languages and is the #1 news app in India across app stores. The recent foray into eBooks has created a vibrant marketplace for publishers with over 4 million local language eBooks downloaded in the past 6 months. Users pay for downloads through Newshunt’s proprietary payment platform iPayy that is now also being used by third party developers for micro-transactions. “The era of the real Indian mobile internet written and consumed in local language is just beginning. We aim to serve local language users and give them world-class products starting with Newshunt, eBooks and iPayy. Our vision is to create a made for India platform and work closely with publishers, developers, OEMs and other ecosystem partners to digitize, distribute and monetize the consumption of local language. We invite passionate talent interested in building a truly Indian platform to become part of the journey” said Viru Gupta, co–founder and CEO of Newshunt. “For Matrix Partners India, the emergence of Newshunt has been exciting to witness as an early and largest investor in the company. Newshunt is the leading local language mobile-only platform with a highly innovative, localized approach and business model. There is a significant opportunity ahead and Matrix Partners India is privileged to have been associated with Viru and the team over the past five years, and welcomes Sequoia to the Newshunt partnership” said Rishi Navani, co-founder and Managing Director, Matrix India. "As India moves from a 100M to 500M smartphone user base it is critical to bridge the gap of making available relevant content and apps for Indian Language users. Newshunt is a clear category leader for regional news, books and apps; and with its unique ipayy micro payments capability is best placed to become the leading digital goods company to its millions of customers" said Mohit Bhatnagar, Managing Director, Sequoia Capital India Advisors. About Newshunt: Newshunt is the flagship product of Verse Innovation Pvt. Ltd.. Newshunt offers news from over 100 news sources in 12 languages with over 25,000+ articles everyday. iPayy is a unique micro-transaction platform based on carrier billing with access to 700M subscribers across 5 major telcos in India and currently used by 300 digital goods merchants. The company has presence in India, Middle East, and Africa with over 150 employees. Further information is available at www.newshunt.com About Matrix Partners India: Matrix Partners India is an investment firm with INR 3,000 crore under management. The firm invests in companies targeting the Indian consumer market at the seed, early and early growth stages. The firm has invested in several market leading mobile internet companies including Biscoot (mobile entertainment), LimeRoad (social commerce marketplace), Mswipe (mobile POS), Ola (India’s largest cab network), Quikr (online classifieds), Stayzilla (stays marketplace), and Woo (serious dating) among others. Matrix Partners has a global network of funds investing in the US, China and India with $3 billion under management. Further information is available at www.matrixpartners.in About Sequoia Capital India: Sequoia Capital in India currently manages funds capitalized at close to USD 2 billion and invests across seed, venture, and growth stage opportunities. It takes a long-term view on investments and plays the role of an active, value-added partner to entrepreneurs, business families and management teams. Over the past 8 years, Sequoia Capital has invested in more than 75 companies in India including Capillary Technologies, Druva Software, Justdial, Micromax, Mu Sigma, Pine Labs, Practo, Prizm Payments, Quick Heal, Truecaller and Zomato. Sequoia Capital operates out of offices in Bangalore, Mumbai, and New Delhi. Globally, Sequoia Capital has an unparalleled track record of partnering with entrepreneurs to create global market leaders. Sequoia Capital has been an early investor in companies such as Apple, Cisco, Dropbox, Google, LinkedIn, Oracle, Yahoo, YouTube and Zappos. Sequoia Capital maintains dedicated teams in USA, China, India and Israel. For more information, please visit:www.sequoiacap.com

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