India-based Pocket FM, an audio streaming service offering audiobooks, stories, and podcasts from the most diverse communities of creators, raised USD 22.4 million on 6th December.
Investors: The investment round was led by Lightspeed, with participation from investors that included Times Group and Tanglin Venture Partners, a first-time investor.
Purpose of funding: The startup plans to use the funds to expand its operations, build a larger community of content creators, improve its recommendations technology, and strengthen its global position within the audio OTT category. From the previous year, the platform’s user base grew significantly. Accordingly, it also plans to expand its workforce in several areas.
About Pocket FM
Founded in 2018 by Rohan Nayak, Nishant KS, and Prateek Dixit, Pocket FM is located in Bengaluru, India. It is an audio streaming service offering audiobooks, stories, and podcasts from the most diverse communities of creators. Over 17,000 writers and voice artists create content in eight languages for the startup, which provides more than 100,000 hours of content in various genres. Pocket FM aims to promote and democratize audio creation by discovering, nurturing, and showcasing new talent.
What the founder has to say
“We are building a robust ecosystem for Audio OTT with Pocket FM and its largest community of content creators. We are at a juncture where both Pocket FM and the overall audio OTT space are witnessing exponential growth. Audio storytelling has now become a mainstream content format for entertainment and our mission is to build Pocket FM as a global entertainment service provider. We are grateful to our investors for their continued faith and support in our vision and are very optimistic about the future,” said Rohan Nayak, Co-founder and CEO at Pocket FM.
What the investors have to say
“We are excited to back the Pocket FM team as they scale up to build the future of audio content & are looking forward to the next phase of this incredible journey. The team has constantly innovated ahead of the curve, with multiple language offerings for their short & long form audio content and in becoming the go-to destination for audio content creators,” said Harsha Kumar, Partner at Lightspeed.
“Pocket FM is a pioneer in the audio OTT space in India, and their approach towards democratizing audio content creation is a game-changer. The company’s stellar growth trajectory, user engagement, and retention are a testament of the consumer’s love for Pocket FM’s product. We were blown away by the deep user insights and consumer focus put forth by Rohan, Nishanth, and Prateek and are really excited to be a part of the journey. We look forward to working with the Pocket FM team towards building a large and enduring business,” said Sankalp Gupta, Partner at Tanglin Venture Partners.
“Audio is emerging as one of the preferred mediums to consume content. It is exciting to see homegrown platforms like Pocket FM leading this innovation. Not only have they done well in India, they are also spreading their wings globally. We strongly believe that Pocket FM will continue to lead this segment globally. We are excited to be a part of this journey” said Abhishek Mitra Gupta, Managing Partner at TVentures.
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