Close on the heels of investing in Pradeep Kar's Indya.com, Rupert Murdoch has made a $11 million (about Rs 47 crore) investment in Mumbai-based Internet firm Baazee.com in return for a significant stake.
According Baazee, Star's executive vice-president Gray Walrath will join the Baazee's board. Apart from Star TV, the company has also got investments from Global Bridge Ventures and affiliates of New Bridge Asia.
With the $19 million fund Baazee has raised from these investors, the total investments have gone up to over Rs 100 crore in less than three months. The list of investors has also increased to eight, with seed capital coming from Angel Investor Scott Murphy.
"Baazee.com's auction business fits Star's investment strategy in finding local partners with compelling content and good business model. Online auctions have potential in revolutionising transactions in India," said Walrath.
According to sources, Star has lined up investments worth about $200 million in the ICE sectors in India over the next 12 months.
Star TV will be involved in infotech, content creation and television broadcasting. It is looking at making Bangalore the centre for infotech operations. Mumbai will be the hub for content creation, mainly for movies and television.
Star India also plans to form alliances with ISPs.
Apart from the third round funders, the global list of investors that have participated in various rounds of financing over the last three months include some of the leading international venture capital funds, like Viventures (the venture capital arm of Vivendi Corporation), eVision holdings, ICICI Venture, Chrysalis Capital and the L N Mittal group.
Baazee.com had also plans to tie up with portals to offer online auctioning. It plans to tie up with various mobile service providers for WAP-enabling services, so that the consumers will be able to access the services using various mobile devices.
NET MOVE BAAZEE.COM
* Executive VP Gray Walrath to * Infusion of $19m from
join the Baazee board strategic investors
* Investments of $200m over * Tieups with portals to offer
one year inthe ICE sector oneline auctionion
* Plans drawn up for portals * Mergers to provide
Vortals; alliances with ISPs. WAP-ending services