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Excl: BharatMatrimony.com founder eyes IPO in 2014, looks at listing in India

Matrimony.com (Formerly Consim Info Pvt Ltd), which owns a string of matrimonial-related consumer Internet properties, including BharatMatrimony.com, is hoping to go public sometime next year, said Murugavel Janakiraman, founder and CEO of Matrimony.com.

It has been among the top Internet firms that are expected to go public. Though there have beenreports that the firm has lined up a public issue and has even hired bankers for the issue, it has not officially given any timeline or commented on the reports.

Speaking to Techcircle.in, Janakiraman said, "We can't share much on the details but we do hope it (IPO) happens sometime next year."

Interestingly, he said the firm is looking at listing in India. This would make it yet another significant consumer Internet firm to go public after Just Dial. Many other Internet firms which are matured and are likely candidates for IPOs are considering overseas listings, hoping to get better valuations abroad.

Janakiraman said, "We are an Indian company; so most likely we will list in India only. The recent Just Dial IPO indicates that India is very much ready for good, premium Internet companies."

He said the strategy of selling a majority stake in Clickjobs and demerging the real estate business IndiaProperty.com has been in line with preparing the company for an IPO.

"The reason for demerging IndiaProperty.com is that the matrimonial business has been growing profitably and we know there are plans of going public; so we want to focus on them separately. We didn't want plans for IndiaProperty and the matrimonial business to affect each other," he said.

The real estate business IndiaProperty.com demerged from Matrimony.com Pvt Ltd and raised $7 million (Rs 38 crore) from Canaan Partners and Mayfield Fund recently.

As of now, the company is not looking for any pre-IPO fundraising and Janakiraman said the firm would evaluate options as and when it is required.

Matrimony.com raised $8.65 million in its first round of funding in 2006 from Yahoo and Canaan Partners. It was followed by a second round of funding worth $11.75 million from Yahoo, Mayfield Fund and Canaan Partners. After the second round of funding, the company started exploring more niche businesses like real estate and the job portal but later it realised that there is much to do in the matrimonial sector itself, according to Janakiraman.

It now has a host of allied religion focussed matrimonial sites like MuslimMatrimony.com and ChristianMatrimony.com besides other targeted sites such as DivorceeMatrimony.com.

Two years ago Yahoo exited the firm by selling its stake to Bessemer Venture Partners besides existing VC investors, Canaan Partners and Mayfield Fund. The IPO may mean possible part or full exits for some of its existing investors.

(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)

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