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Google bets on India, ready to buy 2-year-old start-up Sims

Google-owned YouTube, an online video sharing and social media platform, is set to acquire social commerce media start-up Sims in India, betting on emerging opportunities in this segment. Financial details of the deal were not disclosed. Simsim was established in June 2019.

“As more and more purchases happen online, videos have an important role to play in helping viewers discover new products and find expert advice,” said Gautam Anand, VP of YouTube APAC, in a blog.

“Today, we are taking another step to help viewers find and purchase products from local businesses: We have signed a definitive agreement to acquire Simsim and expect to complete the transaction in the coming weeks. “

According to Anand, Simsim is harnessing the power of video and creators to help small businesses convert to e-commerce. The Simsim app serves as a platform to connect local businesses, influencers and customers.

The company raised $16 million in 2020.

According to a joint report last year by consulting firm Bain & Company and venture capital firm Sequoia Capital, the social commerce opportunity in India is projected to reach $16-20 billion by 2025, compared to around $2 billion last year.

Other examples of platforms that enable social commerce are Glowroad, Shop101 and Bulbul. Ankur Pahwa, EY India e-commerce and consumer internet leader, said, “These platforms operate through apps that can be downloaded for free, and are primarily designed to cater to the growing number of mobile users looking to earn extra income. target.”

Social commerce means buying and selling directly through social media platforms like Facebook, WhatsApp, Instagram or Twitter. The App User is referred to as the Reseller.

In a statement, Amit Bagaria, Kunal Suri and Saurabh Vashisht, co-founders of Simsim, said, “We started Simsim with the mission of helping users shop online with ease, through small vendors and brands. is able to display and sell its products using the power of content. reliable influencers. Being a part of the YouTube and Google ecosystem drives The Sims forward in their mission. “

Anand said: “There will be no immediate changes to SimSim, the app will continue to operate independently while we work on ways to show SimSim offers to YouTube viewers.” He said the investment is based on YouTube’s ongoing investments in India such as the India Digitization Fund.

Earlier this year, social commerce platform Mesho became a unicorn with funding led by SoftBank Vision Fund 2. The firm was valued at $2.1 billion in this round.

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