News aggregator Dailyhunt (formerly Newshunt) has acquired a minority stake in local language news website OneIndia for Rs 15 crore. The deal will help Dailyhunt generate multimedia content (short videos and audio) for its platform. Following this, Dailyhunt CEO Virendra Gupta will be joining the board of Greynium Information Technologies, the company which owns OneIndia.
Note that OneIndia also has an app called 60 Seconds Now which gives news snippets in 60-70 words in local languages such as Bengali, Gujarati, Hindi, Kannada, Malayalam, Tamil and Telugu. 60 Seconds Now will continue to exist independently and the investment will be primarily used for producing videos and audio, BG Mahesh, founder and managing director of Greynium told MediaNama.
He added that Greynium currently has a video production team of 10 and will be expanding in the coming days. They will be primarily producing videos in the non-news segment i.e. travel, gadgets reviews, personal finance etc. Greynium will be pushing the videos on Dailyhunt and on YouTube channels owned by OneIndia.
Greynium also owns other websites called thatscricket (Cricket news), Gizbot (technology news), DriveSpark (auto and cars), Boldsky (fashion and lifestyle), NativePlanet (travel) and Filmibeat (cinema news). There’s also click.in which is an online classifieds website.
Dailyhunt will be using its distribution to reach out to its local language user base. Dailyhunt has a monthly active user base of 26 million and over 120 million downloads. Greynium’s websites have 35 million unique views and more than half a billion page views a month.
In 2010, Rajesh Jain’s NetCore acquired a majority stake Greynium Information Technologies for an undisclosed amount. Jain had previously invested in Greynium in 2006 via his personal venture capital firm, Emergic Venture Capital. OneIndia was founded in 2006 by BG Mahesh.
MediaNama’s take: Through this deal, Dailyhunt ensures that it will get content from OneIndia. The deal as such seems more focused on content and it seems like a smart move for both the companies as approximately 40% of mobile data is consumed on video and consumption is only going to increase. It also helps them target an audience which is more comfortable with video rather than reading.
Generally, it isn’t good for an aggregating platform to buy equity stake in a publisher as there may be some fears that it might give preferential treatment to its publications. Dailyhunt should ensure that content from OneIndia should be given the same standing as other local language publications. If not, it might drive away other publishers from Dailyhunt and users will have less to read and less choice.
However, Dailyhunt’s app does aggregate enough news from local news websites but none of them seem to be focusing on short videos. For example, in Kannada, Dailyhunt aggregates news from Praja Vani, Udaya Vani, Vartabharathi, Bisi Suddhi and others.