Is Google looking to buy Indian startup InMobi to improve its advertising platform?

Google is looking to buy Indian startup and mobile advertising network InMobi, says a report in Economic Times.

The report says that InMobi which has been looking at a valuation of over $2 billion, had not quite managed to raise funds in the last round in 2014 and currently the talks with Google have begun.

The report quotes a source as saying that "they (Google and InMobi) are now talking formally, the next step is a technology due diligence," and that Ram Shriram of Sherpalo Ventures, who is an early investor in InMobi, played a role in the talks.

Google logo is seen in this file photo. AP

Google logo is seen in this file photo. AP

InMobi was founded in 2007 by Naveen Tewari, Amit Gupta, Mohit Saxsena and Abhay Singhal. As a startup it has been widely successful in India and as the ET report notes it has roped in clients like "Yamaha Motor Co, Microsoft, Adidas, Lancome" as its clients. The company has seen over 138 billion monthly ad impressions, has over 1 billion monthly active users and claims to have seen 2.6 billion App Downloads tracked on their platforms.

InMobi provides ad-platforms for companies with a focus on mobile-first and currently is competing with the big-guns like Facebook and Google when it comes to Mobile advertising.

According to the ET report, Google has seen increasing competition from Facebook on the mobile advertising front and thus is looking to acquire InMobi in order to beef up its advertising platforms.

If Google does acquire InMobi, this will be the second big Indian acquisition by a foreign tech giant. Earlier Twitter acquired Indian startup ZipDial, a deal which was valued at $30 to $40 million.

As we had noted at that point, the deal was seen as great news for Indian startups as it meant that they could expect more money and higher valuations. Mohit Bhatnagar of Sequoia Capital which closed over 40 deals in the year including in mobile gaming firm Octro told Firstpost, "The India startup opportunity is being discussed in global boardrooms.There is good reason for this rising interest from global investors. The valuations of Indian internet companies have soared with increased net access boosting the topline."


Updated Date: Mar 11, 2015 13:47 PM

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