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Business News/ Companies / Truecaller to expand presence in India

Truecaller, a caller identification app launched by Stockholm-based True Software Scandinavia AB, expects to double its user base globally to 300 million, with half the users expected to be in India, by the year’s end, chief executive and co-founder Alan Mamedi said on Tuesday.

India, which is the largest market for the app, followed by the Middle East and North Africa region, has about 80 million users of Truecaller. The app helps users manage contacts and screen calls. “We have been focusing on increasing the consumer base while providing the best user experience," Mamedi said on a video call from Sweden at the launch of Truemessenger, an app to identify, filter and block SMSes.

Truemessenger is the third offering from the firm after Trucaller and Truedialer, which adds names and photos to unknown numbers before the users’ call. The firm launched Truemessenger exclusively for use in India.

“Spam calls and messages are a very huge problem in India. With weak privacy laws in the country, the need to stop spammers becomes imperative. While there are initiatives being taken for cutting down on spam, these are far, few and broken. Truecaller does give an integrated approach," said Sanchit Gogia, chief analyst and chief executive at Greyhound Research. “The starting premise and the business case, both are very strong here. Truecaller already has muscle in terms of penetration and standing as good brand."

“India is half the market size for us. We have done a lot of research and we see growth coming from tier-II and tier-III markets," said Mamedi. “Our intention is to expand our team in India strategically from 10 people at present in two locations, Gurgaon and Bengaluru, to 20 people this year," he said.

In October, Truecaller raised $60 million in a funding round led by Atomico Ventures, the start-up investment fund established by Skype founder Niklas Zennström, alongside Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers and its previous backer, Sequoia Capital. It earlier raised $18.8 million led by Sequoia in February 2014 and $1.3 million from Open Ocean Capital in September 2012.

Apart from strengthening its presence in India, the six-year old company is partnering with phone makers to achieve its target of doubling its user base.

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Updated: 08 Jul 2015, 01:01 AM IST
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