Ashish Hemrajani of BookMyShow, Vivekananda Hallekere of Bounce and Zerodha’s Nikhil Kamath have come on board the social network that’s positioning itself as a local alternative to Twitter and Facebook Inc. amid their troubles with the Indian government.
Interestingly, Koo’s co-founder Aprameya Radhakrishna distanced the company from Chinese investor Shunwei Capital, saying that they had invested more than two years ago when it was building its first product Vokal, and that the investor would be exiting fully, with other investors buying out their stake.
“Koo is an India registered company with Indian founders,” Radhakrishna said in a tweet on Wednesday. “Latest funds for Bombinate Technologies is led by a truly Indian investor 3one4 Capital. Shunwei (single digit shareholder) which had invested in our Vokal journey will be exiting fully.”
Koo is on an overdrive to brand itself as a “truly Indian” and “Atmanirbhar App” after several politicians, government ministries, celebrities and sports personalities, flocked to the platform in what is seen as a sign of protest against Twitter, after the US company got into a tussle with the Indian government over discourse surrounding the ongoing farmer protests in New Delhi.
Radhakrishnan when contacted by The Economic Times said that the investment from the entrepreneurs is in addition to the $4.1 million the company recently raised, with some of the capital going towards buying out the stake of some existing investors. He added that the process of removing Shunwei from the company’s captable was still in progress.
3one4 Capital, which is leading the Koo funding round, counts Siddharth Pai and Pranav Pai — sons of former Infosys CFO Mohandas Pai — as its founding partners. Other investors in the parent company of Koo include Accel, Kalaari Capital, Blume Ventures, and Dream Incubator.