Intending to breed a unicorn, Fosun invests in Indian audio streaming platform Headfone

Headfone hosts choice content that is popular in the Subcontinent.

Photo:Shutterstock.com

Fosun RZ Capital, a subsidiary of Chinese conglomerate and investment company Fosun International, has invested in Bangalore-based audio streaming platform Headfone.

The venture capital firm did not disclose the deal’s financial details, though Indian media outlet The Economic Times reported that Headfone bagged USD 750,000 in seed funding.

Fosun RZ Capital said Headfone will use the new funds to build its team, enrich its content portfolio, and expand its user base.

Headfone was founded by two former Facebook software engineers, Pratham Khandelwal and Yogesh Sharma, in 2017. It is like China’s Ximalaya FM app, which allows its users to create, share, and listen to audio content, said Fosun.

Ximalaya FM, one of China’s major online audio streaming platforms, secured RMB 4 billion (USD 580.62 million) in its latest financing round, which was led by Tencent and Goldman Sachs. This brought the valuation of Ximalaya, which had 40 million registered users in January 2018, to RMB 24 billion.

Headfone has been downloaded 500,000 times via Android app channels, with its daily active users spending nearly 50 minutes using the app on average, said Fosun. Headfone has a rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars in Google Play app store.

Compared with videos, audio content has the potential to reach more users, especially if their spare time is fragmented, said Jin Hualong, chairman of Fosun RZ Capital.

“Considering China’s online audio market is worth tens of billions of yuan, we believe there is huge space for development for Headfone in India,” Jin added.

Fosun RZ is also the backer for India HR startup Kredily and logistics unicorn Delhivery.