South Asian Entertainment Portal Desi Hits! Attracts Series B Fundraising

Tue Jan 22, 2008 9:02am EST

* Reuters is not responsible for the content in this press release.

Access to India's Expanding Global Youth Market Draws Big Support

SAN FRANCISCO, Jan. 22 /PRNewswire/ -- One year after its launch, Desi
Hits! (www.desihits.com) has announced the successful completion of its second
round of fundraising, which garnered a further $5 million from Draper Fisher
Jurvetson (DFJ), Trident Capital and the D.E. Shaw Group. With its massively
popular celebrity interviews, music videos, podcasts and blogs, Desi Hits! has
become the South Asian-or "Desi"- pop destination of choice for the world's
enormous South Asian (Indian) youth culture.
    "In one short year we've also seen the West's interest in South Asia
skyrocket," notes Desi Hits! CEO Anjula Acharia-Bath. "Not only are we
providing exciting, culturally relevant entertainment for the global Desi
population, we're opening doors to Western acts that want to enter the huge
Indian market in an authentic way." As a result, both Hollywood and music-
industry insiders have sought to partner with Desi Hits! in a number of
synergized ways, the most notable of which was a recent exclusive podcast with
rap superstar 50 Cent prior to his concert in Mumbai. "You know that when 50
Cent is embracing Desi there's something big going on," says Acharia-Bath.
"He's a smart businessman and sees the huge opportunity of the South Asian
Diaspora. We're incredibly honored that DFJ and Trident have shown continued
support of our original vision and that the D.E. Shaw Group has recognized the
company's great future potential."
    Desi Hits! has an appeal that speaks to a South Asian youth population
seeking a combination of Eastern authenticity and Western street "cred." As a
result, the site has grown to a substantial entertainment destination with
more than 10 million hits per month. "Entertainment web offerings can be very
challenging because they demand an instinct about targeting the right
audiences with the right content," says Michael Banks, an executive of the
D.E. Shaw Group's venture capital unit. "We think Desi Hits! has found the
right formula by producing an East/West fusion culture that has broad appeal
in South Asia and around the world."
    With recent coverage in such publications as The Wall Street Journal, WWD
and Vogue India, Desi Hits! is fast becoming the matchmaker between East/West
pop culture collaborations. Upcoming highlights include further web exclusives
with American hip-hop and R&B acts like LL Cool J and Akon, and new releases
from Urban Desi, Bhangra and Bollywood artists like Jay Sean, AR Rahman and
Raghav.
    "It's a fantastic time in the world to be Desi," adds DFJ's Ravi Belani.
"The emerging South Asian demographic will experience more significant changes
from their parents than any other previous generation. Desi Hits! answers the
need for a next generation media platform to address the richer, more
cosmopolitan and multimedia needs of the Desi consumer. We are thrilled to
back Desi Hits! and think its vision captures the richness, fun and
sophistication of this powerful demographic."
    About Desi Hits!
    Reflecting the diversity of today's trendsetting South Asian, Desi Hits!
spotlights established and emerging talent across music an film. The
multimedia site caters to a cosmopolitan online community that craves fresh
innovative East/West fusion, and the best from Los Angeles, London, Bollywood
and beyond. Streaming music/video and podcasts, blogs and artist profiles,
celebrity interviews, lifestyle features, special event listings as well as
user-generated shows are all accessible anytime, anywhere. Desi Hits! is
dedicated to creating and encouraging exciting, edgy content and has already
gained a following in more than 68 countries.
    CONTACT:
    Andrea Codrington, acodrington@brandbuildingpr.com
    Stacy Gillian, sgillian@brandbuildingpr.com
    Brand Building Communications, 212-343-8917

SOURCE  Desi Hits!

Andrea Codrington, acodrington@brandbuildingpr.com, or Stacy Gillian,
sgillian@brandbuildingpr.com, both of Brand Building Communications for Desi
Hits!, +1-212-343-8917
Comments (0)
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.