New York-based news and blogging portal Mashable has joined hands with Zee Entertainment Enterprises Limited (ZEEL) promoted India.com. The tie-up will launch an India specific variant called Mashable India. The Pete Cashmore founded portal informed readers about the entry into India through a post by its chief strategy office Adam Ostrow. He wrote, “The timing of this expansion couldn’t be better. Since our beginnings in 2005, Mashable’s mission has been to chronicle how technology and digital media are transforming the world. In few places is this trend more pervasive than in India, which now boasts the second largest population on the Internet and is expected to have 650 million smartphones in the next five years.” He added that India’s burgeoning start-up eco-system, GDP rising to 7.5% in 2014 (according to recent reports) makes it an intersection of technology and digital media with culture and society, which makes the country “such a natural place for Mashable to grow”. “Moreover, Indians have already shown us that they are hungry for Mashable content: It’s one of our top five markets worldwide,” revealed Ostrow in his blog. Under the strategic partnership both brands – Mashable and India.com will work together in all areas, editorial, promotion and monetization.
The portal under the tie-up will be called Mashable India and is expected to launch in the first half of this year. In the months to come, an editorial team based in Mumbai and New Delhi will be appointed in order to launch a dedicated site for Mashable India.Mashable India’s editorial direction will come from Mashable’s Executive Editor, Jim Roberts. The Mashable India content team will be in constant contact with Mashable’s US content team to ensure content both resonate with the Indian audience and align with Mashable’s editorial mission. Elaborating on the reason for choosing India.com as the one to tie up with in the country, a spokesperson from Mashable India said, “Mashable was looking for a well-established and authentic partner in India, who understood the complexities of India while showing high growth and promise. India.com Web Portal has been the fastest growing publisher is India with 45 million UVs, with many number one properties - they sounded like the aggressive and young company, which we were looking for as partners.” The spokesperson added that the promoters of the India.com Web Portal are two established and innovative companies with massive clout in terms of access to digital users and revenue generation which also added to the confidence of going with India.com. The monetization strategy for Mashable India will be similar for the global brand, which will target premium brand advertisers that would like to reach one of the most active global communities with over 21 million social followers, who share 3 Mashable articles per second. Mashable India will offer brands and agencies a wide spectrum of offerings, including branded content, premium display advertising and content marketing solutions. In terms of content, the Indian venture will continue the editorial philosophy of Mashable, which is to inspire and inform its global community about how digital and technology are changing the world. “We will also look to leverage India.com's strength in generating original content for Indian audiences and its widespread reach in the Indian digital space. There will be India specific innovations, which we will reveal at the time of the launch,” adds the Mashable India spokesperson.