New Delhi-based Gamma Gaana Ltd., the parent company of music streaming service Gaana, is reportedly raising $115 million from Chinese investment firm Tencent Holdings Ltd. and Times Internet. Notably, Gaana is a Times Internet subsidiary.

With this investment, Tencent acquires a minority stake in Gaana, which was so far a wholly owned subsidiary of Times Internet.

Multiple media reports confirmed that Tencent and Gaana confirmed the deal was taking place.

The funds to be raised will be used by Gaana to further invest in artificial intelligence (AI) related technology to personalize music experiences for consumers and to further develop its subscription services for paying users, and to develop aligned music experiences for Gaana users, said an another media report.

Launched in April 2010 by Times Internet, Gaana.com is a commercial music streaming service providing free and licensed music content that are both Indian and international languages.

In October 2015, Micromax had invested in Gaana for a minority stake. Other than this, Gaana does not have any other investors on board.

Later in December 2016, Gaana announced that it had crossed 50 Million app downloads.

Music streaming services in India are generally considered as money-losing business. One promising, venture-backed streaming company in India called Dhingana struggled to secure licenses from record labels and create a sustainable business. Dhingana was snapped up in a fire sale in 2014 by Rdio, which filed for bankruptcy the next year and was sold to Pandora Media Inc.

Last time any Indian music streaming startup had raised funds was Saavn, which raised undisclosed amount from former Vodafone global CEO Arun Sarin, in September 2015.

Tencent, which has also invested in India's Flipkart, is dominating on the global music streaming business. It owns Tencent Music, a popular service in China and also swapped shares with Spotify last year, giving it a stake in one of the most popular music streaming services in Europe and the U.S. Tencent also owns Joox in Southeast Asia.

China’s Tencent Holdings has its eyes set on India’s booming startup industry. It made its investor entry into the Indian startup industry three years ago in 2015 by leading a $90 million round in Practo Technologies, a Chennai-based digital health platform. Later it made $700 million investment in India’s ecommerce leader Flipkart, in April last year.

Post a Comment

Previous Post Next Post
Like this content? Sign up for our daily newsletter to get latest updates.