The startup is expected to be valued at $65-70 million post the fundraise, they said, adding that the company is raising money for product improvement and adding more languages. It will use a portion of the funds also for recruiting developers and data scientists.
Sharechat’s Android app is currently available in 10 regional languages, including Hindi, Bhojpuri and Odia. It does not have an app for Apple devices.
“Sharechat has about four million monthly active users who share at least 200,000 posts daily,” one of the persons mentioned above said.
“The kind of users it has attracted are diverse, such as a Malayali professor or a Punjabi truck driver.”
The startup’s target now is to get more women to create and share content on the app, this person said.
Sharechat chief executive Farid Ahsan declined to comment on the company’s latest fundraising talks or on the estimated valuation of the startup. Xiaomi and Shunwei Capital couldn’t be reached immediately.
Sharechat previously raised $4 million in series-A funding in November at an undisclosed valuation.
Most popular on the Sharechat app are topics related to Bollywood blockbusters, health tips, funny videos, jokes, quotes from the Bhagavad Gita, and astrology readings.
It focuses on enabling users to generate content in their language and share those with other users, who can like, follow, comment or start a chat based on a shared post.
The platform initially grew and acquired users by using three bots to scrape content off more than 60,000 WhatsApp groups. Then, users be gan increasingly developing and sharing their own content.
“(The app) gives poets, comedians, singers and other such individuals in small towns (a platform) to develop a digital presence and increase their reach. About 85% of our users are from outside the metros, but now the lines are blurred since many of these people from smaller towns and cities work in the metros,” Ahsan said during a conversation in November, adding that the platform would look at monetisation only after reaching at least 25 million users.
Sharechat, founded in January 2015 by IIT-Kanpur graduates Ahsan, Bhanu Singh and Ankush Sachdeva, has raised nearly $6 million in funds till date from Lightspeed India Partners, Saif Partners and India Quotient.