(Updated below with stats and questions)
Rajesh Jain is back in the portals business.
Netcore, his SMS content distribution and enterprise technology solutions business, has acquired Greynium Information Technologies, the owner of Indian language portals OneIndia, and classifieds business click.in, for an undisclosed amount. Jain had previously invested in Greynium via his personal venture capital firm, Emergic Venture Capital. The terms of the deal have not been disclosed.
Bangalore based Greynium is an independent online media business, founded by BG Mahesh and Sriram Hebbar. BG Mahesh, known for Mahesh.com, was the CEO of IndiaInfo until December 2005. IndiaInfo was acquired by the Dainik Bhaskar Group, apparently in 2007. OneIndia portals provide content in English, Hindi, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada and Malayalam, and a claimed reach of over 6 million monthly unique visitors.
OneIndia.in: (based on Google Analytics Data shared by Greynium with Google AdPlanner)
— Unique visitors (cookies): 2M India, 7.3M Worldwide
— Pageviews: 40M India, 62M Worldwide
— Total Visits: 6.2M India, 12M Worldwide
Click.in: (hasn’t shared Google Analytics data)
— Unique visitors (cookies): 290K India 350K Worldwide
— Pageviews: 2.2M India, 2.6M worldwide
— Total Visits: 430K India, 510K worldwide
OneIndia competes with the likes of WebDunia, owned by the Naidunia group of publications.
The acquisition has significant synergies for for Netcore, with Greynium’s online businesses complementing Netcore’s mobile business:
OneIndia And MyToday
– Greynium brings to the table vast amount of content and content creation capabilities to Netcore, which focuses on content distribution to consumers via SMS
— Netcore had earlier eschewed the portal and mobile web space to focus on SMS. OneIndia has mobile Internet properties that will benefit from MyToday’s reach, and brings OneIndia online and mobile viewers to the MyToday fold.
Click.in and MyToday
— Greynium also brings to Netcore the classifieds business Click.in, which could well benefit from the remnant ‘tag’ inventory on MyToday SMS’.
— Additionally, there are companies like Ver Se Innovation on the SMS classifieds side that make money from providing telecom operators with Jobs classifieds subscription packs. Expect the MyToday-Click.in to perhaps take that model on with free SMS classifieds (hence more inventory), or perhaps even to get into the classifieds subscription game.
Greynium and Netcore
On the enterprise side: Netcore’s business is complemented by Greynium which provides application development services, portal solutions, SEO services, among others. Netcore provides enterprise email solutions, instant messaging servers, firewall, bulk mailing, bulk SMS solutions. There appears to be minimal overlap between the two, and yet, synergies from a clients perspective.
The question some people are asking me: does OneIndia add ability to monetize to MyToday SMS? It does add significant content and newsgathering ability, alongwith classifieds as explained above: news updates via MyToday SMS would carry links to OneIndia’s mobile portals, and Click.in tags. It’s an interesting combination of an Internet, Mobile and Mobile Internet play, and adds inventory. But what of monetization, is the question?