Vernacular news aggregator app DailyHunt bags $6 Mn from Falcon Edge

Vernacular focused news and entertainment aggregation DailyHunt has raised over $6 million as a part of Series E funding round from New York-based hedge fund Falcon Edge.

According to a VCCircle report via RoC filing with MCA, the Sequoia-backed startup is valued at $335 million pre-money, a little over the valuation ($330 million) during its Series D round of $25 million.

The company’s valuation was, however, estimated to be around $500 million when it was reportedly in talks with Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba for a 10-12 per cent stake. During the same period Tencent was also eyeing a significant stake in one of DailyHunt’s close competitor NewsDog worth $35-40 million deal.

It was expected to bring Alibaba and Tencent head to head competition in the vernacular content market in India, where the Jack Ma-led company already operates its own news and entertainment business – UC News.

DailyHunt, formerly known as Newshunt, was floated by Umesh Kulkarni and Chandrashekhar Sohoni in 2009. The startup was then sold to Verse Innovation in 2012 and finally, it was rechristened as DailyHunt in August 2015.

DailyHunt has amassed over 155 million app installs offering 100,000 news articles every day in 14 languages, including Hindi, Bengali, Kannada, and others. It also claims to have around 100 million monthly active users who are spending over 7 billion minutes on the service on a monthly basis.

DailyHunt provides trending news articles across multiple genres including entertainment, business, and sports, amongst others from over 800 publication partners.

Besides, it also offers original video content in Hindi and Telugu with free live television streaming service with more than 130 channels across nine languages. The platform has also partnered with Vuclip and YuppTV—over-the-top (OTT) video content space providers.

The company had appointed former Facebook India’s CEO Umang Bedi as its president in February this year.

Recently, Bedi had announced a self-serve platform via DailyHunt that will enable local stores and small businesses to attract customers through pin code level targeting on their app. The platform is currently being piloted with select businesses and expected to roll out for the massed by next month.

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