Dropbox, Wordpress founders back instant messaging app Hike
Instant messaging app Hike has raised an undisclosed amount in funding from Quora founder Adam D'Angelo and WordPress founder Matt Mullenweg.
Senior Dropbox executives Aditya Agarwal and Ruchi Sanghvi also participated in this round, Hike said in a statement.
"It's quite clear that messaging is playing a key role in bringing people online in a mobile first market like India and Hike Messenger has begun to play a pivotal role in that market," said Sanghvi.
Kavin, son of Bharti Enterprises chairman Sunil Bharti Mittal, founded Hike Ltd in 2012. The company is a unit of Bharti SoftBank Holdings Pte Ltd, a joint venture of Bharti Enterprises and Japanese internet conglomerate SoftBank.
Hike is a peer-to-peer app that uses both data and texts to deliver messages. It has released a number of new features in the recent past that include Hindi news bytes, stickers in 30 languages, group calling, group chat for up to 500 members and 100 MB file sharing.
In August 2014, Hike secured $65 million (Rs 400 crore) in funding from a group of overseas investors led by Tiger Global Management.
Recently, Hike claimed that its users exchange 1 billion messages everyday.
Operating in the highly competitive communications app segment, Hike competes with market leader WhatsApp as well as Facebook Messenger, Viber, Google Talk, China's WeChat, Japan's Line and Nimbuzz in India. In September, WhatsApp said it has 900 million users in India. However, WhatsApp does not share additional statistics pertaining to its Indian user base.
Revenue of telecom operators has been under pressure for several quarters now as subscribers increasingly use messaging apps for both instant messaging and voicecalls.