Home / Companies / Start-ups /  Trell raises $11.4 million series A

Mumbai: Indian community-commerce platform Trell announced a $11.4 million Series A round led by KTB Network. Samsung Ventures, Ankur Nagpal, CEO of Teachable, Gokul Rajaram (board member, Pinterest, Square, DoorDash) and Vineet Buch (ex-head of Google Play Store Development) also participated via Firebolt Ventures in the round along with existing investors Sequoia’s Surge, Fosun RZ Capital, and WEH Ventures.

Given the Chinese origin of some of the investors like KTB and Fosun, the deal is pending government approval, according to people in the know.

After the Indian government banned many popular Chinese apps like TikTok in the country, a lot of Indian brands like Trell, Chingari and Roposo have tried to fill the void left behind these apps. Since the Chinese app ban, Trell claims it has witnessed 500% growth with a total of 15 million plus creators on its platform receiving more than 5 billion monthly views and has been rapidly growing since then.

With over 75 million downloads and 25 million monthly active users on its app, Trell claims its has grown 27 times in the last 12 months and has emerged as one of the biggest lifestyle social platforms in India.

Since Chinese apps were banned in June, this space has seen some investor interest in India. However, most investors measure retention to see how many users opened the app and performed at least one action within a stipulated period of time. The platforms have gained lots of downloads but have been struggling with user retention.

In March, Trell had announced a $4 million pre-Series A funding round. The company said that the round has been led by Sequoia Capital India’s Surge, Fozun RZ Capital and KTB Network. Trell is a mobile application, where users come together to share 3-minute vertical videos in native languages. Currently, they have over 20 categories available in 8 Indian languages. Trell monetises through social commerce where the passion-based community of content creators (KOL’s) enable users to make well informed and suitable purchase decisions for better lifestyle choices.

“Trell has shown incredible growth over the last few months and we believe it's only the beginning of what will come in the future. We were especially impressed by how the team dealt with an unexpected user growth during the covid-period. It'll soon be a most prominent lifestyle social discovery platform in India and we're happy to ride on a rocketship", said Hyesung Kim, KTB Network.

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