Saturday, September 27, 2014

YuppTV to raise Rs 120 cr for expansion, acquisition

YuppTV, the US-based over-the-top (OTT) content player that distributes TV channels through the Internet, will raise $20 million (Rs 120 crore) in the second round funding in the next three months. The company is in talks with the private equity players and it hopes to complete the process in three months.

Serial entrepreneur and founder of the testing tools firm AppLabs Sashi Reddi invested $2.5 million (about Rs. 16 crore) to pick 10 per cent in the firm, promoted by Uday Reddy. Prior to that, it got $5, 00,000 from family rounds to build the firm.

“We will use the proceeds from the second round to increase our customer base, with a focus in the Caribbean and Latin American countries. Part of the funds would also go to acquiring a niche player,” Uday told Business Line here.

With an Indian arm located in Hyderabad, the company conducts research in content distribution technologies. It employs 145 people

The firm, which mostly serves the Indian Diaspora in the US, first found the serious need for Indian television content while working in the Caribbean area for Nortel. With a subscribe base of about 80 lakhs including about one lakh paid users, the firm distributes about 200 channels in 12 Indian languages and English.
It made revenues of $10-11 million last year ended December 2013.

“Our technological solutions help you to access the content you missed to watch from our cloud storage. Our development team works on improving the content distribution platform and creation of apps (applications) that work on different mobile operating systems,” Uday said.

Media Player
The company has recently launched YuppTV Media Player that allows the users to switch from one gadget to another yet continue to watch the same programme.
Uday said there was a significant change in the customer preferences. “Watching TV is no longer a linear, top-down distribution of content. “Content distribution will become more and more driven by consumers,” he said.