Delhi-based Printline Media Pvt Ltd, founded by former editor-in-chief of The Indian Express newspaper Shekhar Gupta, has raised an undisclosed amount of angel funding from a clutch of investors, a financial daily reported.
The investors include former Tata Sons Ltd’s chairman Ratan Tata, Infosys co-founder Nandan Nilekani, managing director of Kotak Mahindra Bank Uday Kotak, and founder of wallet firm Paytm Vijay Shekhar Sharma, a report in Mint stated on Tuesday. Others who participated in the round are biotechnology company Biocon’s managing director Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw and co-founder and chairman of Bangalore-based IT firm Sasken Technologies Rajiv C Mody.
The company will use the funds to launch its new website, The Print. The investors will reportedly hold close to 20% stake in the firm, the report added.
Messages sent to Gupta, Nilekani and Sharma have not elicited a response at the time of publishing this report. An email sent to Tata, seeking comments, too went unanswered.
However, Gupta told Mint that the firm will soon be making a formal announcement.
The Print will be competing with the likes of The Wire, Scroll.in and The Quint.
In February this year, subscription-based news startup, The Ken, had raised $400,000 (Rs 2.68 crore) from a clutch of investors, including Sharma.
Paytm’s Sharma has also invested in technology news site FactorDaily, along with Blume Ventures and Accel Partners, according to VCCEdge, the data research platform of NewsCorp VCCircle. He was also one of the investors in digital media startup DealStreetAsia, which raised funds from Hindustan Times Media Group and Singapore Angel Network.
Early this year, Bangalore-based digital media company YourStory Media Pvt. Ltd, which runs YourStory.com, had raised $3 million (about Rs 20 crore) in a fresh round of funding from existing investors Kalaari Capital, Qualcomm Asia Pacific Pte Ltd, 3ONE4 Capital and UC-RNT Fund, which is a joint venture between the University of California and Tata.
Other Indian startups in the digital media segment include Inc42, and news aggregators Dailyhunt and Tiger Global-backed InShorts.