Mobile messaging service WhatsApp is hiring a business head for the Indian market as a part of its expansion plans for this year, along with a few other markets, its Head of Business Development Neeraj Arora told MediaNama, responding to a question from MediaNama on whether things will change for the company on the business development front, following the $19 billion acquisition by Facebook. "The roadmap was, for this year, to expand the business development team, and to have some local presence. For 5-7 countries which are really important, India being one of them, we actually want to have one person in that country to help us with business development, press, other miscellaneous activities that happen in that country like relationships with carriers, OEM's and everything else". Arora did emphasize that Facebook and WhatsApp are going to operate independently and nothing will change, but "it might happen that if someone from Facebook is interested in doing this for us, and if we like it, then we'll do it." WhatsApp has around 40-45 million users in India, and two key partnerships with telecom operators: its first partnership was inked with Reliance Communications, and subsequently, it partnered with Tata Docomo. The first partnership was an important one, Arora told us, because they didn't know what will come out of it. The partnership with Reliance Communications "has done exceptionally well, and that's why we launched the second one with Tata (Docomo). There are a couple more in the pipeline," Arora said, adding that "On…
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