International Finance Corporation (IFC) is looking to lead a $6 million round of funding in TV search and electronic programming guide (EPG) company Whats On India Media Pvt Ltd which runs its operations under the What’s-On-India brand. The World Bank arm is looking to invest $4 million in the Mumbai-based company, which has earlier raised two rounds of funding from venture capital investors.
The deal would be one of the rare investments in the consumer technology space by IFC, which has been an active private equity investor in India.
The investment will help Whats On India Media fund product development and business expansion in the Middle East and Southeast Asia.
Whats On India Media offers products like EPG, which indexes TV programmes/content across more than 1,300 channels and enables search and selection of digital TV content on set top boxes. The product is provided to digital TV operators, device manufacturers and app developers on platforms such as smartphones, tablets and IPTV.
It also offers TV Street Maps, which provides ground data on channel availability and placement to broadcasters/TV channels.
Whats On India Media also offers customer interface portals, a cloud-based rich media heavy web-based subscription management solution with a personalised recommendation engine.
Whats On India Media was founded by former TAM Media Research executive Atul Phadnis in 2005 and counts Sequoia Capital India, Nexus Venture Partners and Intel Capital as investors. While it raised the first round of funding from Sequoia and Nexus in 2008, it raised second round in 2011 led by Intel Capital taking its total capital raised to $13.5 million.
The company has also been expanding its presence beyond India to become a pan-Asia player. What’s-On-India expanded its operations into the Middle East under the name ‘What’s-On-Arabia’ in Amman, Jordan through an acquisition of a local EPG company last year.
(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)