Thrive Global, a new media organization focusing on wellness started by Arianna Huffington, has launched its operations in India with Times Bridge. Times Bridge is Times Internet’s international investments and partnerships division, and its investments and partnerships include Airbnb, Coursera, Uber, Vice, Business Insider, Gizmodo, Lifehacker, PC Mag, Advertising Age, Goal, Tech Radar and Techpost.
Thrive Global’s India launch comes shortly after Times Bridge ended its partnership with HuffPost (earlier called Huffington Post), Huffington’s earlier venture. She stepped down as editor-in-chief of HuffPost in August 2016. HuffPost was acquired by AOL (for $314 million) which was later acquired by Verizon Communications.
Note that under the partnership with Times Bridge, Times Internet would pay the salaries of Huffington Post India employees and in return, Huffington Post globally would share some of the revenue. It is unclear if a similar same deal will continue with Thrive Global for the India operations. MediaNama has reached out to Times Internet for details on the launch and will update once we hear from them.
In a post on the website, Huffington said that she chose India to be the first country outside the United States to expand due to “its ancient wisdom and spiritual traditions” for wellness. “I truly believe that, more than any other place on earth, India has the answers to what I see as the biggest question of our time: how we work and live in an age when change is exponentially faster and technology has permeated every aspect of our lives,” Huffington said.
Note that Times Internet recently acquired House of God a mobile platform for spiritual content. It has another spiritual content website called the Speaking Tree that has sections on meditation, astrology, and mythology. Speaking Tree also aggregates a number of editorials from The Times of India newspaper and also organizes offline retreats.
What are its verticals?
Thrive Global currently has three divisions – partnerships with corporates, partnerships for commerce, and partnerships for media.
- Corporate partnerships will look at employee data to improve retention and reduce staff burnout and will also include live training and online courses.
- Commerce partnerships have a selection of curated products which is aimed at a person’s well being. Thrive has a product called Phone Bed, a charging station which can support 10 devices, where users are encouraged to leave their devices before going to bed. It also has an app called Silo which filters out messages and only allows emergency calls and text and it has another app called ThriveAway which deletes or archives incoming email.
(An aside: Thrive Global lists Trishla Jain as a commerce partner. She is an artist and the daughter of Times of India Group’s vice chairman Samir Jain.)
- Media Partnerships includes editorial partnerships, branded content, community campaigns, social amplification and branded events.