Canaan Partners Makes Investment in New India Office
Canaan Teams with Yahoo! Inc. in an $8.6 Million Investment in Bharat Matrimony, an Online Marriage Service
Canaan Partners, a leading international venture capital firm, today announced the funding of Bharat Matrimony Group, the leading online matrimonial service in India. This is an exciting new investment by the venture firm’s India office, which opened in June. Canaan is the lead investor in an $8.6 million A round financing that also includes Yahoo! Inc.
The investment underscores Canaan’s ongoing commitment to early-stage Internet-related deals in India said Deepak Kamra, a Canaan general partner. Canaan was the first investor in Match.com in the United States in 1995, the first and biggest dating service in the United States, Kamra noted. Match.com had revenues of $250 million in 2005. Canaan was also an early investor in Doubleclick, a pioneer in Internet banner advertising.
“Canaan Partners was there in the early days of social networking on the Internet with Match.com, and we’re capitalizing on the same kind of opportunity today in India. We saw pretty much the same thing at Match.com and we’re seeing it again at Bharat Matrimony” Kamra said. “India has a huge population of 1.1 billion, and the market is ripe for investment opportunities in technology and technology enabled services. .”
Bharat Matrimony was founded in 1997 and until now was self-funded. More than 500,000 marriages have been arranged online in that time, said Murugavel Janakiraman, the company’s founder and CEO, which makes it the biggest and most successful matrimony service in the world. The company manages more than a dozen different matrimony portals catering to Indians of different languages and religions throughout the world.
Allok Mittal, Executive Director of Canaan’s Indian office, noted that Bharat Matrimony portals will be supported by offices in nearly 40 Indian cities with personal computers linked to the Internet.
“India is one of the key markets for Canaan Partners and we are looking at creating lasting partnerships in the technology space” said Mittal. “We are very excited to be the lead investor in Bharat Matrimony. The company is very well positioned to continue to grow rapidly and maintain its leadership in the Indian Internet landscape while continuing to be a highly valuable company from a social standpoint. The company services truly changes the lives of millions of Indians around the world.”
The portal makes money through monthly subscription charges of $10 to $15 a month. Most users subscribe for three to six months.
About Canaan Partners
Canaan Partners is an early stage venture investor. The firm catalyzes the development of innovative technology and healthcare companies to build next-generation market leaders. Founded in 1987, Canaan Partners has $2.4 billion capital under management and has invested in 232 companies, completed 60 mergers and acquisitions, and brought over 50 companies public. Canaan invests in Internet and consumer technology, communications, semiconductor and energy, enterprise software and services, biotechnology, and medtech. Canaan was an early investor in DoubleClick (DCLK), CommerceOne (CMRC), Copper Mountain Networks (CMTN), Immunicon (IMMC), ONI Systems (ONIS), Dexcom (DXCM) and Combinatorx (CRXX), along with dozens of other market-leading companies. Canaan has offices in Menlo Park, California; Rowayton, Connecticut; Herzliya Pituach, Israel; and Gurgaon, India. For more information visit: www.canaan.com.
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Congrats Alok. All the best!
This is great stuff, Alok!
Great beginning Alok! Cheers1
Great news for Indian Online Industry.
I don’t think Bharat Matrimony was totally self funded.
In 1998, the venture got angel funding of $0.5 million from Ranjan Desai, founder of the US-based Real Soft Inc.