Delhi-based Little Black Book, a local discovery platform, has raised $1.2 million from IDG Ventures and Indian Angel Network.
Launched in 2012 by Suchita Salwan, Little Black Book (LBB) curates recommendations across categories, providing unique local discoveries in innovative formats. An evolution from existing listing-based models, LBB uses content as a medium to drive an engaged audience to local enterprises, places and experiences. They partner with local small to medium scale brands as well as large global brands looking to engage with a local audience including Coca Cola, Airbnb, HTC, Samsung and Nestle.
“We have proven that urban consumers want to move beyond traditional Yelp-esque listing and aggregator platforms; they seek more than just food and event discoveries. As a media-tech business, our north star has been driving not just monthly active users, but delivering a product that draws a highly engaged and sticky audience,” says Suchita.
The funding has come almost a year after it raised $150,000 in seed funding from Rajan Anandan of Google India, Niraj Singh of Outbox Ventures, Sachin Bhatia of MakeMyTrip, Singapore Angel Network, Aseem Vadehra of Vadehra Art Gallery and Aashti Bhartia of OGAAN.
In just about 8 months since, the platform claims to register over 800% growth in monthly active users and over 600% growth in revenue.
Suchita, along with three colleagues and an army of interns, built LBB over 2013-2014. They had 80,000 monthly unique visitors in December 2014 and Suchita claims that over two lakh people attended LBB events and LBB partner events in 2015. Currently, it claims to reach out to over 1 million users every month.
Little Black Book is currently available in Delhi and Bangalore as a website and app. It is planning to expand to five more cities in future.
The local discovery market seems to be heating up. In March this year, Shouut, a social discovery app by Giant Tech Labs Pvt Ltd, secured $500,000 in angel funding from a high net-worth individual angel investor. In April, Mumbai-based hyperlocal social discovery platform Living Local raised $200,000 in seed funding from Rattan Chadha, former CEO of Mexx Europe Holding.
In February 2016, GoYaNo, a marketplace for discovering events and restaurant deals, raised around $50,000 in seed funding from Carclubindia.com Founder Mukesh Kumar Gupta.
In November last year, Mumbai-based Yagerbomb, which operates nightlife discovery platform OUWT raised $150,000 from a group of undisclosed angel investors.