Way2News, a news app that focuses on hyper local content, has raised about ₹130 crore ($16.75 million) in Series-A from WestBridge Capital and serial entrepreneur Sashi Reddi. This marks the foray of WestBridge Capital into the media and entertainment sector opportunity in India.
Founded by Raju Vanapala six years ago, the start-up created a niche in developing hyper-local content in a crowded market of digital news app segment.
“We are going to use the proceeds to expand into Tamil nadu, Karnataka and Kerala. We will build editorial, sales and marketing teams,” said Raju Vanapala, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Way2News.
Part of the proceeds would also go into developing artificial intelligence based technology to minimise human intervention in delivering credible news.
The start-up built a team of over 30,000 on-the-ground citizen reporters who contribute 5,000 unique stories from Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. It claims that it has over eight billion monthly screen views.
“Way2News has shown a remarkable ability to scale and grow capital efficiently. Their user acquisition approach, engagement, and retention rates are unique and best-in-class in the industry,” said Sumir Chadha, Co-founder and Managing Director at WestBridge Capital. “We look forward to a long partnership with them.”
WestBridge Capital manages over $7 billion in funds across India and Mauritius with a focus on investments in India. It so far invested in over 130 companies.