Fundamentum Partnership, a venture fund run by Nandan Nilekani, has led a $21.8 million Series B1 funding round for the audio streaming startup Kuku FM.
This round’s backers include Krafton Inc., the dominant South Korean gaming company, 3one4 Capital, and Vertex Ventures in addition to new investor Paramark Ventures.
By the end of 2023, Kuku FM hopes to have amassed a base of more than 10 million paying subscribers.
“We have seen rapidly growing interest for content in regional languages in Tier 2 and 3 cities, semi-urban and rural segments. We aim to continue building a strong and diverse creator network that caters to this segment of the Bharat audience,” said Lal Chand Bisu, Co-founder and CEO, Kuku FM.
After receiving $19.5 million in March from a group of investors including Google, Verlinvest, and other investors, led by Krafton Inc., this is Kuku FM’s second financing round in 2022.
“In its four-year journey, Kuku FM has built a business with robust fundamentals, a strong monetisation model, and a national creator-listener community. Kuku FM’s digital-first, tech-led approach, with its focus on the ‘Bharat’ audience fits ideally into our investment focus,” said Prateek Jain, principal at Fundamentum Partnership.
With more than 1.7Mn+ paying customers, Kuku FM is now India’s largest audio platform. It was founded in 2018 by Lal Chand Bisu, Vikas Goyal, and Vinod Kumar Meena.
The organisation said in a statement that it contains more than 150K hours of content in a variety of formats, including audiobooks, narratives, book descriptions, and podcasts, with the most of the content having exclusive to the portal.
About Kuku FM
The Mumbai-based Kuku FM is a leading audio content platform that creates, produces, markets and distributes exclusive premium audio content in the form of audiobooks, stories, summaries, courses and more categories through its mobile app and website available on Android and iOS.
Kuku FM hosts 150,000 hours of content in a wide range of fiction and non-fiction genres, such as self-help, education, entertainment, personal finance, spirituality, inspiration and history.
It currently offers content in audiobooks, stories, book summaries, courses and podcasts in 7 languages - Hindi, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Malayalam, Bengali and Marathi.