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NaapTol intends to raise $25 mn for boosting media presence across TV and internet

Mumbai-based comparison shopping portal NaapTol.com is looking to raise second round of funds amounting around $25 million within the next couple of months for launching a private sales section on its website named ‘Privileged Deals’ and a 24 hour TV shopping channel. The company will be launching Privileged Deals by the first quarter of 2011-2012 financial year and the TV channel would be on air by March 2012.

Mumbai-based comparison shopping portal NaapTol.com is looking to raise second round of funds amounting around $25 million within the next couple of months for launching a private sales section on its website named ‘Privileged Deals’ and a 24 hour TV shopping channel. The company will be launching Privileged Deals by the first quarter of 2011-2012 financial year and the TV channel would be on air by March 2012.

Speaking to AlooTechie about their plans, Manu Agarwal, founder and CEO, NaapTol.com, said, “We need to bolster our media presence across platforms and now we plan to increase our footprint on internet and TV. We have seen massive tractions as we went for print and TV activities for our Hot Deals section, and now we want to leverage that for all our services. The funds that we intend to raise would be used for bolstering our media presence.”

NaapTol.com was launched as a product research and comparison platform in 2008 and in June 2009, the website launched its deals section called Hot Deals. They went beyond internet and promoted their deals across media platforms like print and TV. “This helped us gain a lot of branding in Tier II and Tier III cities where organised retail has not reached,” added Agarwal.

The company also operates four outsourced call centres where they handle 25,000 calls a day. NaapTol gets around 6000 transactions a day and a majority of these happen through these call centres. The website gets around 60,000 visitors a day. According to Manu Agarwal, NaapTol is gearing up to compete with the $500 billion Indian retail industry and that will bring the required scale in the business. “We should not be looking to compete with the ecommerce industry as it is too small in India right now. If we need scale, we got to take on the overall retail segment and all our plans are in line with our initiatives to scale up our business,” Manu Agarwal added.

In August 2010, NaapTol had closed Series-A round of venture capital funding from Canaan Partners. The deal size was not disclosed but according to financial advisory firm Centrum Capital, which had advised on the deal, Canaan has invested Rs 33 crore in NaapTol which includes acquisition of shares held by Bennett Coleman (The Times of India group).

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