Josh Talks Pvt Ltd, a Gurgaon-based startup that organises conferences, has raised an undisclosed amount of funding from angel investors such as Girish Mathrubootham, founder of cloud-based customer engagement platform Freshworks; Apurva Chamaria, global brand director at IT services firm HCL; and Rohit Chanana, head of strategy and finance at scooter manufacturer Hero Corporation, a company statement said.
Through the investment, Josh Talks will bring on board strategic mentors and advisors in order to launch its platform in vernacular languages such as Telegu, Tamil, Bengali, Marathi and Bhojpuri, the statement added.
Josh Talks, established in 2015 by Shobhit Banga and Supriya Paul, creates content in the form of short talks and videos covering a range of stories from sectors like entrepreneurship, sports, arts, and activism.
The company’s basic offering is similar to TED Talks and not-for-profit organisation TiE (The Indus Entrepreneurs), except that it doesn’t particularly focus on entrepreneurship or startups and doesn’t pay its speakers.
Over the last two years, the organisation has scaled its conferences to over 25 cities in India and reached out to more than 65,000 attendees on the ground and over 25 million viewers online.
“Our target audience comprises of 16-25 year-olds in Tier 2, Tier 3 and Tier 4 cities who are completely unexposed and don’t know what the world has to offer. The funding and guidance from the investors will help us launch in vernacular languages and create an impact on this audience,” Paul said.
Content by Josh Talks can be accessed on YouTube, Facebook, JIO Chat, Dekkho, YuppTv, Uber, and ScoopWhoop.
The company has recently partnered with Facebook to launch a campaign #StartAb to inspire a lakh of young individuals to take up entrepreneurship by April 2018.
“In today's fast-paced life, young people often lose track of what is important and we need a platform like Josh Talks to remind them. Everybody needs heroes they can relate to. Being a diverse country with many languages we need to reach the Indian youth present in every nook and corner, so going into vernaculars is a no-brainer and I am convinced Josh Talks is the right team for that job," Mathrubootham said.
Ritesh Malik, a doctor-turned-investor and founder of co-working space provider Innov8, has also previously invested in Josh Talks.