Gurugram-based Pocket FM, which operates an eponymous audioshows platform, on Tuesday said it has secured $16 million (around Rs 130 crore) debt investment from US lender Silicon Valley Bank, a division of First Citizens Bank.
Pocket FM, which counts Lightspeed Venture Partners, Tanglin Venture Partners, Goodwater Capital and Naver Corporation as among its investors, will deploy the fresh proceeds to boost its audio series library, expand creator community and scaling up revenue.
Last year, Pocket FM secured Series C funding of Rs 491 crore ($65 million) led by Goodwater Capital and Naver Corporation.
With the latest round, the company claims to have cumulatively raised $109.5 million till date.
Founded in 2018 by IIT-Kharagpur graduates Rohan Nayak, Nishanth Srinivas and Prateek Dixit, Pocket FM is an online platform for audioshows and podcasts. Operated by Delhi-based Pocket Fm Pvt Ltd, it claims to be offering over one lakh hours of enriching long-format content. It offers premium audio content in eight languages- Hindi, Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Bangla, English, Kannada and Marathi.
The platform claims to have clocked 12X revenue growth last year, crossing $25 million annualized revenue run-rate in October 2022.
“The debt funding we have secured gives us the resources to continue expanding our content library and build the largest audio series platform globally,” said Nayak.
"Pocket FM has an innovative vision to audio storytelling and is helping to position it as a mainstream entertainment format, said Chris Cameron, senior vice president at Silicon Valley Bank.
Earlier in March this year, First Citizens BancShares Inc. bought Silicon Valley Bank (SVB), which was taken over by regulators after a wave of withdrawals from the lender.
Union Minister of State for Electronics and Information Technology Rajeev Chandrasekhar had said that Indian startups had deposits worth about $1 billion with Silicon Valley Bank.
In February last year, Kuku FM, which operates in the same space as Pocket FM, raised $5.5 million in a Series A round led by venture capital firm Vertex Ventures, an arm of Singapore headquartered Temasek Holdings.
In October 2019, audio streaming platform Dose FM was acquired by tax filing and investment platform ClearTax to help the latter build mobile-focused products for small businesses.
In July 2019, social audio platform Headfone raised $750,000 in a seed funding round led by Fosun RZ Capital, the venture capital arm of Chinese business conglomerate Fosun Group.