ht-asklaila-reutersHindustantimes.asklaila.com is the new micro website developed by Hindustimes.com and Asklaila to allow users to search for local services and event information across 12 Indian cities. It appears that AskLaila has also recently powered City Search for Reuters India.

Asklaila is already associated with HT Media Limited. According to a release, ‘HT City’, a supplement of Hindustan Times in Delhi publishes content from asklaila’s online portal. Asklaila has similar ‘city search’  partnerships with Airtel (for mobile search), Chennaionline (for CityInfo), MSN, Amar Chitra Katha (for Culture Beat) and iMint (for Where i-Mint). Affle SMS 2.0, a mobile messaging application also integrates search results from Asklaila.

Nikhil adds: As we have mentioned before, these are essentially initiatives to aggregate a user base. For websites and publications that don’t have a substantial user base to monetize, such partnerships help build familiarity and a brand, and increase usage and traffic. Building destination sites is a tough ask in India, with only around 7 million broadband connections. For Media houses, it’s just another source of revenue, of sharing a user base. NDTV Convergence, in particular, has been aggressive when it comes to partnerships.

Other Media Houses have similar tie-ups with online services to increase the number of users, as reported in Medianama in August. NDTV and Astrolife.com have launched NDTVAstro, with free and paid services. Similarly Bejan Daruwallah’a  GaneshaSpeaks.com supports Indian Expresses’s site ExpressIndia and AOL‘s astrology portal.

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