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Friday, April 16, 2021

Messaging platform Gupshup raises $100 million at $1.4 billion valuation –

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A startup that started its journey in India 15 years in the past, serving to companies attain and interact with customers by way of texts mentioned on Thursday it has attained the unicorn standing and can be worthwhile.

San Francisco-headquartered Gupshup has raised $100 million in its Sequence F financing spherical from Tiger World Administration, which valued the 15-year-old startup at $1.4 billion.

The startup operates a conversational messaging platform, which is utilized by over 100,000 companies and builders right this moment to construct their very own messaging and conversational experiences to serve their customers and prospects.

Gupshup, which has raised $150 million thus far and concluded its Sequence E spherical in 2011, says every month its purchasers ship over 6 billion messages.

“The expansion in enterprise use of messaging and conversational experiences, reworking just about each buyer touchpoint, is an thrilling secular pattern,” mentioned John Curtius, a companion at Tiger World Administration, in a press release. “Gupshup is uniquely positioned to win on this market with a differentiated product, a transparent and sustainable moat, and an skilled crew with a confirmed observe document. Along with its market management, Gupshup’s distinctive mixture of scale, progress and profitability attracted us.”

Tens of tens of millions of customers in India, together with yours actually, keep in mind Gupshup for a distinct cause, nonetheless. For the primary six years of its existence, Gupshup was finest recognized for enabling customers in India to ship group messages to pals. (These cheap texts and other clever techniques enabled tens of tens of millions of Indians to remain in contact with each other on telephone a decade in the past.)

That mannequin ultimately grew to become unfeasible to proceed, Beerud Sheth, co-founder and chief govt of Gupshup, advised

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in an interview.

“For that service to work, Gupshup was subsidizing the messages. We have been paying the price to the cell operators. The concept was that after we scale up, we are going to put commercials in these messages. Lengthy story quick, we thought as the amount of messages will increase, operators will decrease their costs, however they didn’t. And in addition the regulator mentioned we are able to’t put advertisements within the messages,” he recalled.

That’s when Gupshup determined to pivot. “We have been neither in a position to subsidize the messages, nor monetize our person base. However we had all of this superior expertise for high-performance messaging. So we switched from client mannequin to enterprise mannequin. So we began to serve banks, e-commerce companies, and airways that have to ship high-level messages and may afford to pay for it,” mentioned Sheth, who additionally co-founder freelance office Elance in 1998.

Over time, Gupshup has expanded to newer messaging channels, together with conversational bots and it additionally helps companies arrange and run their WhatsApp channels to have interaction with prospects.

Sheth mentioned scores of main companies worldwide in banking, e-commerce, journey and hospitality and different sectors are among the many purchasers of Gupshup. These companies are utilizing Gupshup to ship their prospects with transaction data, and authentication codes amongst different use instances. “These should not promoting or promotional messages. These are core service data,” he mentioned.

The startup, which had an annual run price of $150 million, will use the recent capital to broaden its product providing and courtroom purchasers in additional markets.

This can be a growing story. Extra to observe…



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