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India's VerSe acquires Apple News+ rival Magzter | TechCrunch

India's VerSe acquires Apple News+ rival Magzter | TechCrunch

Indian news aggregator app DailyHunt's parent firm VerSe Innovation has acquired popular digital newsstand platform Magzter, the duo said on Thursday.

The Bengaluru-headquartered startup has fully acquired New York-headquartered firm Magzter, which counts Singapore Press Holdings as its backer. VerSe did not disclose financial terms of the deal.

Aming Bedi, co-founder of VerSe, told TechCrunch in an interview that the acquisition of Magzter, which offers more than 8,500 magazine titles on its eponymous app, reflects VerSe's growing focus on reaching and serving affluent audiences. points to He called the deal Verse's “biggest” acquisition to date.

Magzter has amassed over 1 million paying users in India and boasts of a global active user base of 87 million, Bedi said. The firm, which offers a pay-as-you-go model with an annual subscription fee of $20 to $30, has found a distribution and technology partner in VerSe, he added.

The Daily Hunt – Which is worth 5 billion dollars. And CPP Investments, with support from the Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan, Qatar Investment Authority, Carlyle Group, and Goldman Sachs — began reviewing the deal with Magister last year. The Indian firm plans to launch DailyHunt Premium this year, which will include an ad-free experience as well as Magster's catalog. Magzter will also continue to operate as a standalone service, Bedi said.

Magzter maintains partnerships with thousands of major publishers and offers titles including The New Yorker, The Economist, Vanity Fair and Time on its app. DailyHunt is working to introduce a personalized news feed in Magzter that will curate articles and stories from the digital newsstand app's extensive catalog of magazine titles.

Magzter founders Girish Ramdass and Vijay Kumar Radhakrishnan said in a joint statement, “This partnership opens new avenues to deliver high-quality content experiences to consumers across India, giving our readers unparalleled digital reading experiences. further strengthens our mission to deliver.” Bedi said he would continue to work on Magster after the acquisition.

Bedi said VerSe, which also runs the short video app Josh, is rapidly improving its finances and expects group-wide EBITDA profitability by next year. Startup too recently Engaged with local social media startup Koo. For one acquisition, TechCrunch reported in February. Bedi, while declining to comment on any specific discussions, emphasized that VerSe focuses on deals with firms that are doing well financially and growing earnings.

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