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Hungama secures $25 million from Xiaomi & other investors


Digital entertainment company Hungama has raised $25 million from smartphone maker Xiaomi and existing investors Intel Capital, Bessemer Venture Partners and Rakesh Jhunjhunwala. Hungama will use the funding for expanding its content library and improving its products.

The company mentions that it will soon add 8000 hours of TV content on Hungama Play, a platform it had launched in July last year. As of now, it claims to feature over 6,500 movies from Bollywood, Hollywood and in regional Indian languages like Telugu, Tamil, Marathi, Oriya, Bhojpuri, Gujarati, Kannada, Bengali and Punjabi (overall 12 languages).

It’s not clear if with this investment, Hungama and Xiaomi will enter into a content distribution agreement as well. This would benefit both companies; Hungama will get to introduce its app to new Xiaomi users, while the smartphone manufacturer will be able to add value to its offering by say giving away 2-3 months of subscription.

Micromax’ Gaana investment: Note that in October 2015, smartphone maker Micromax invested an undisclosed amount in Gaana. At the time, the company said it would offer free trials of Gaana+ service, which allows unlimited downloads and an ad-free subscription, with new Micromax smartphones. Note that, Micromax had announced its plans of foraying into the services business in September 2014.

Interestingly the same month, Samsung announced that MixRadio would be preloaded on its new Tizen-based Z3 smartphone. However, no one really quite uses Tizen, and the partnership doesn’t extend to other phones.

65 million users: Hungama currently claims to have 65 million monthly active users on its platform. In May last year, the company had around 50 million monthly active users, an increase around 15 million users in 10 months. In January last year, competitor Saavn had claimed that it had over 11 million monthly active users and that it received more than 30 million unique users in 2014.

Other developments:

– In August last year, DTH operator DishTV tied up with Hungama to launch a music service called Music Active.

– In July, Hungama started live streaming events, starting with ‘Khazana – A Festival of Ghazals’ concert.

– In April, Hungama tied up with Saregama to add over 100 playlists and over 25 radio stations to different eras, musicians, composers and artists on its platform.

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