Indyarocks raises strategic investment from ValueFirst – Aggressive Mobile Plans for future

Hyderabad based Indyarocks has raised strategic investment from Valuefirst, the mobile messaging company. Indyarocks has been a good performer in mobile social networking space and has been using Valuefirst bulk sms service for the service updates to users.

We earlier profiled Indyarocks, way back in 2007 and the team had plans to build a youth portal to bring the national issues together. Later the team realized the value/traction lies somewhere else and moved on to entertainment space (partnered with Eros Entertainment).

Interestingly, while I was writing about the launch of 0.facebook on Indian operator network, I was thinking about Indyarocks and the impact these launches will have on them. It will be a tough journey going forward, and the only way to move to next level is to tie up with operators (access provided by valuefirst).

Though the value of the deal is not yet known, I believe Valuefirst probably gets access to 5million user base of Indyarocks; and of course, a cozy relationship going forward (maybe, an acquisition later?).

Asde, we are happy for the Indyarocks team as they were one of the first sponsors of Pluggd.in.

Interview with Kalyan Manyam, Founder of Indyarocks

Qn: Why Valuefirst?
This year we are making some aggressive moves on the Mobile front. Operator relationships will play a very strong role and Valuefirst’s experience and relationships will help us execute our plans better. We have been using their services before and it had helped us interact with the management closely over a period of time. Both companies have few common goals and we felt investment from Valuefirst will make much more sense than taking regular investment from VCs at this point.
Qn: Do share some Indyarocks Stats:

  • Close to 5 million registered users now and we are seeing strong growth.
  • 65% of users have registered their mobile numbers for mobile interaction
  • We are profitable.

- Mobile will be the name of the game for us this year.


Excerpts from the Press Release

ValueFirst Messaging and Communication Services company,  Indyarocks, a very popular online and mobile entertainment based social network . This is a strategic investment by ValueFirst after 3 consecutive acquisitions in the last 8 months. ValueFirst CEO, Vishwadeep Bajaj said the company was extending its business into the Media vertical as digital media is where the advertising spends will shift over the next years. Mobile with a reach of 600m users will attract a large pie of the digital advertising.

ValueFirst Group COO said that “we are very excited with this investment as it strengthens our presence in the online and sms media segments.  ValueFirst group is already a leader in the want to also dominate the media space on the mobile is finally picking up in India, and SpotOn subsidiary- which is a SMS ad network is doing extremely well.
A couple of months back, we acquired majority stake in tagg.in with a view to building more communities, and increasing sms inventory. Indyarocks is a leading social networking site, that positive with a cult following and this investment will help them get explosive growth in the next couple of months and at the same time help SpotOn get more and more inventory to monetize”

ValueFirst is undergoing a transformation.Less than a year ago it was just a messaging company – now it is a multi-modal commuincations company using SMS, Voice, USSD, email, GPRS and WAP as bearer protocols.It was just an Enterprise VAS Company taking baby steps in Mobile Marketing – now it is also in Operator VAS, m-commerce and consumer segments with a profitable mobile marketing business”.

Indyarocks CEO, Kalyan Manyam said “Indyarocks has been a pioneer in the integrated Online and mobile networking space. 2010 will see Indyarocks launching new large scale initiatives in the mobile arena and our relationship with ValueFirst will help us execute the same successfully and aggressively”