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The Indian Express Group announces investments in digital start-ups

By afaqs! news bureau , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Digital | November 24, 2015
The Group has invested in Envoged, PayMango India, Mr Homecare Services and Spiral Content Solutions.

The Indian Express Group has announced an undisclosed round of investments in emerging digital companies such as Envoged, PayMango India, Mr Homecare Services and Spiral Content Solutions.

Anant Goenka

Speaking on the development, Anant Goenka, director, The Indian Express, says, "Our first investment was in Chaldal -- Bangladesh's largest online grocery delivery company. After tasting success in our own digital growth story, we at the Express, are excited to be associated with such brilliant ideas and passionate entrepreneurs. These digital initiatives are promising and we believe they just need a little support to grow to their full potential."

One of the companies in which the Express Group has invested in is PayMango India (paymango.com). It is a mobile marketplace platform for local businesses to manage and market their customer base.

The Gurgaon-based start-up was founded by Gajinder Singh and Ram Singla, both from IIT Delhi, in June this year. It has already raised funds well worth over Rs 1 crore. The duo had earlier launched a couple of mobile and marketplace plays.

"In the transformation of #DigitalIndia, The Indian Express is playing a pivotal role. The esteemed publication, through its quality coverage, has become the most shared voice amongst the youth on various social networks. PayMango shares the same vision of digital empowerment of local commerce by providing local stores an m-commerce platform to satisfy the demand of consumers," says Singh.

"For the country to reap benefits of the internet revolution, we need a Yumist, Groffer or UrbanClap in each locality. That's how PayMango provides local commerce with wings to fly," adds Goenka.

Mr Homecare Services (mrhomecare.in), another digital venture in which The Express Group has invested in, is a professional on-demand maintenance services organisation for consumers and businesses alike.

"The Mr Homecare family is very happy to have The Indian Express on board as one of our investors. We look forward to engage and work closely with the Group as we look to build a strong back-end to service the aggregators in the on-demand home services space," states Rushabh Vora, co-founder and CEO, Mr Homecare Services.

Vora brothers Rushabh and Sahil, launched the on-demand home services company which initially catered to Mumbai, Pune and Bengaluru. Mr Homecare plans to soon expand its operations to Delhi and other markets in the country.

Envoged, in which The Express Group has invested as well is a 're-commerce' platform that allows owners of luxury goods like handbags, footwear and accessories to sell items that they no longer need. The platform takes care of collecting the items, consigning them, checking for authenticity, determining the ideal resale price, and then help sell them online.

"Envoged makes luxury fashion affordable for the aspirational consumers in India. It is a pleasure to have The Indian Express Group invest in us given their reach and connect with a huge class of Indian population aspiring to own luxury in their closets," says founder Anandita Singh.

Talking about the Group's association with Envoged, Goenka says, "India hasn't even scratched the surface of the online luxury fashion market. We're impressed with the passion and focus that this very young team brings to the table."

Spiral Content Solutions (scatter.solutions.com), another company to have attracted investment by the Express Group, is a content marketplace that curates Indian and international content and makes it available for brands to use on social media and other digital platforms.

Rajan Srinivasan, founder and CEO, Spiral Content Solutions, says, "Our goal is to build tools and platforms to help brands become publishers. This relationship adds tremendous heft to us as we power ahead to build out a content marketplace of the highest quality."

The Express Group is a media conglomerate with a wide selection of publications and a network of offices spread across India. Its digital division reaches over 50 million unique users a month and its flagship indianexpress.com is ranked by comScore in India as the third largest English news site by unique visitors. It has 32 national editions, 13 publication centres and four language dailies that reach over 19 million people daily. Its publications include The Indian Express, The Financial Express, Loksatta, Lokprabha, Jansatta, as well as various B2B magazines and events.

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