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BookMyShow.com gets Rs 100-crore funding from Accel Partners

Accel Partners will invest the money through a primary infusion of capital and secondary sale of shares from existing investors.

Leading entertainment ticketing website BookMyShow.com received a shot in the arm with internet business investors, Accel Partners investing Rs 100 crore in the business. Accel Partners will invest the money through a primary infusion of capital and secondary sale of shares from existing investors.

As part of the deal, the Network18 Group will offload 20 per cent of its stake in the holding company of BookMyShow, BigTree Entertainment. Network18 held 60 per cent stake in BigTree Entertainment and following the development, it will continue as the single largest shareholder in the company with a 40 per cent stake.

Network18 runs a variety of digital offerings such as firstpost.com, moneycontrol.com, ibnlive.com, homeshop18.com and in.com.

Ashish Hemrajani

Ashish Hemrajani, founder and chief executive officer, BookMyShow.com says in a press statement, "The funding from Accel comes at an interesting inflection point in our journey and is a strong vindication of our efforts to create India's largest online entertainment ticketing platform. We look forward to leveraging Accel's global internet experience and Network18's continued support to expand our footprint and help take our customer experience to the next level."

"The transaction has allowed us at Network18 to profitably monetise a part of our investment, while allowing us to maintain a large position in the company to participate in the next phase of BookMyShow journey," says Sarbvir Singh, head, investments, Network18.

Besides offering tickets for movies, plays, concerts, entertainment performances and sporting events, BookMyShow.com also partners with cinemas and event organisers as the exclusive ticketing partner. The company is the partner for several sporting franchises in India including Formula 1, Indian Premier League (five of the nine franchises), Aircel Chennai Open, Super Fight League and Yonex Badminton Championships, among others.

The company has also moved to international markets like Malaysia and New Zealand.

"BookMyShow.com caught our attention because it has become synonymous with online entertainment and ticketing. We are constantly striving to invest in businesses that assume a leadership position by driving the definition and growth of their respective categories," says Prashanth Prakash, partner, Accel India.

According to Sameer Gandhi, partner, Accel US, BookMyShow has the potential to become the pre-eminent entertainment destination for India. He is of the view that the internet is playing a crucial role in bringing goods and services to the masses in India and will produce the next generation of Indian consumer franchises.

Accel Partners in the past has invested successfully in companies such as Facebook, Rovio and Groupon, among others. In India too, Accel has partnered with internet businesses such as Flipkart and Myntra.

Avendus Capital was the sole financial advisor to the transaction.

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