India-based Nimbuzz has sold 70% stake to UK-based New Call Telecom for about $175 million putting Nimbuzz value at $250 million as the UK firm plans more acquisitions in the Indian e-commerce, fixed line broadband and Wi-Fi market.
With over 201 million subscribers might be another WhatsApp or Viber acquired for $19 billion and $900 million by Facebook Japanese’ Rakuten respectively.
According to people close to Nimbuzz, the firm processes a billion plus Skype-like calls and over 100 billion instant messages and also has a huge mobile ad platform serving clients in the MENA region and South Asia. The free messaging,voice and video calling app combines the powers of the Internet and mobile communications into one, and lets users call, text, meet, share and connect with family and friends on any mobile device.
UK’s New Call Telecom on Tuesday announced plans to invest as much as $100 million in acquisitions in India in the next 18 months to grow its presence in India.
Dr. Jerome Booth, Chairman, New Call Telecom and Founder, New Sparta Pvt. Ltd., stated, “The Indian National Telecom Policy 2012 has targeted 100 per cent tele-density and 600 million broadband connections by 2020. We are looking at strategic acquisitions to enable New Call Telecom to make strong organic growth in the fast growing Indian telecom market and establish a pan-India presence. We’ve initially allocated US $ 100 million for the purpose and are optimistic of further growth due to the depth of entrepreneurial talent in the telecom services space in India.”
The firms’ short term vision in India is to capture the massive opportunity that the telecom sector presents surrounding data transit, usage manipulation, and streaming; where ever possible collaborating with other incumbent telecom operators efforts.
With over a billion people, India is a ripe market for New Call Telecom. The acquisition of Nimbuzz gives it faster inroads into the market and saves it the customer acquisition woes.