PicsArt focused on localising platform for Indian market

Yatti Soni Bengaluru | Updated on October 05, 2021

The photo and video editing app plans to invest time and funds on the product side

SoftBank-backed photo and video editing app, PicsArt, is investing in localising its product experience and content for the Indian market, as it looks to expand its user base in the country.

“India is a very important market to us, both strategically as well as from an PicsArt employee perspective. We have around 25 million monthly active usersand our monthly users in the country have grown 45 per cent year-on-year,” Avnish Patel, SVP of Strategy and Operations at PicsArt, told BusinessLine.

He added that the company will spend the majority of its time and funds on the product side, along with adding another 100 employees in India, majorly in product and engineering roles, over the next year. The company currently has about a dozen employees in Gurugram and Bengaluru.

PicsArt’s user base can be divided into two kind of users, one where a consumer uses the app for their personal use, for example, to post on their personal Instagram account or for artistic expression. Second, when the consumer uses the app to edit content for an influencer account or to run a small business.

India being a mobile first market, has a majority of consumers using PicsArt for personal use cases, as compared to consumers using it for professional purposes. But the company claims to be seeing a rapid increase in the professional use and creator economy in India, both through the mobile app and desktop version.

“We are always interested in having people create content because when they create content, they're stickier. PicsArt is a combination of tools, content and community. So, when people create content, they put that content back onto our platform, and then other users use that content and build their own new content and share that back. Hence, when more content creators in India create localised content, as a consequence of that, the platform is expected to see natural growth of users, who will in turn get inspired to create more content,” said Patel.

PicsArt is currently fairly new in India and so has not spent much on marketing the platform. But going forward, the company will invest significantly more in brand awareness and would also partner leading brands to achieve that goal.

“We've held off from marketing until we localise the product, but those are brand investments that you'll see happening in the next several quarters,” added Patel.

Further, PicsArt makes about 90 per cent of its revenue through subscriptions, primarily annual and monthly subscriptions, but it also has shorter term subscriptions in certain markets. Other small parts of the company revenues also come from advertisements.

Talking about the adoption of subscriptions in India, Patel said the subscription model is still fairly new in India and is something that the company will continue to communicate the value of, to the users.

“I think over time, we're beginning to help Indian users understand the value of our paid product. But as I noted, we also need to continue to localise the product for regional users. In addition to that, we will also figure out how to create value in India in other ways, such that users feel compelled to use our product and then pay us as well,” he added.

Published on October 05, 2021

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