BCCL backs sports content firm Sports Flashes
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New Delhi-based India Sports Flashes Pvt. Ltd, which operates sports content app Sports Flashes, is raising an undisclosed amount from media conglomerate Bennett, Coleman and Company Ltd (BCCL), a top company executive told VCCircle.

The current round values the company at $4 million.

In March this year, the company had raised angel funding from Vineet Shrivastava, managing director of Nasdaq-listed investment solutions firm SEI India; Advitya Dewan, a seasoned angel investor; Vikas Bajaj, joint managing director at Bajaj Motors Ltd; and Amit Kharbanda, founder of digital set top box maker MyBox Technologies Pvt. Ltd.

A month later, wrestler and Olympic medallist Sushil Kumar and Global Edusports Ventures’ Sandeep Singh also backed the company.

The firm will use the capital to expand its audience base and invest in marketing initiatives, Raman Raheja, co-founder of the firm, said.

“They [Times Group] bring along a huge strength of content and media reach which would give us a great advantage,” he added.

Sports Flashes was founded in August 2016 by Raheja, an entertainment and sports professional with more than 20 years of experience, and Keshaw Sinha, an entrepreneur and IT veteran. Raheja has been associated with the Commonwealth Games, World Kabaddi League, International Indian Film Academy Awards, and Indian Premier League, among others. Sinha is no longer with the firm.

Sports Flashes claims to have 5 lakh subscribers and its content feed is available in seven Indian languages.

The app, which is available on both Android and iOS, offers sports TV, live scores, streaming videos, news, views, highlights, statistics, live updates, and commentary.

BCCL’s digital arm Times Internet owns cricket news portal Cricbuzz.com. It had acquired cricket news and information portal from Bangalore-based Akuate Internet Services Pvt. Ltd in 2014.

Other players in the digital sports content segment include Sportskeeda, Sports Asia, Khel Now and Floodlightz, among others.

Sports startups that have recently raised funds include New Delhi-based social gaming platform Rooter Technologies Pvt Ltd, which secured investment from mobile handset maker Intex Technologies.

In January, Khel Now, a mobile-based social platform for sports, raised $500,000 (Rs 3.4 crore) from Bangkok-based investment firm Indochine International.

Investment professional and founder of banking firm Indus Advisors Pvt Ltd Sanjay Bhattacharya launched a sports app, SportsUID, that connects fans with players.

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