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Snap and Twitter back India’s response to TikTok

The $ 502 million funding round was led by investment firms Tiger Global and Lightspeed Venture Partners, and raised Mohalla Tech’s valuation to just over $ 2 billion, the company said in a statement Thursday. This is Snap’s first investment in the business, while Twitter has participated in two previous rounds, a spokesperson for ShareChat told CNN Business.

“With this infusion of capital, we would continue to aggressively grow our user base,” Mohalla Tech CEO and co-founder Ankush Sachdeva said in a statement.

The fundraiser catapults Mohalla Tech into the growing club of Indian unicorns, or tech startups valued at over $ 1 billion. So far, 2021 has been a bumper year for the Indian startup ecosystem, with at least eight other companies gaining unicorn status.

Mohalla Tech, which was founded in 2015, has raised over $ 766 million in six funding rounds. It has 280 million users on its two products – ShareChat and the Moj short video app.

The latter was launched less more than two days after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government banned TikTok and other Chinese apps June of last year. Moj says he has already racked up 120 million monthly active users, showing India’s keen interest in finding alternatives to popular Chinese apps that remain banned in the country.

“Moj is well positioned to seize the opportunity presented by the growth of short video in India. We are impressed with the team’s understanding of these rapidly evolving technologies and their ability to execute quickly,” said Scott Tiger Global partner Shleifer in a statement.


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