Smule, the social network for music, has announced a strategicÂ investment fromÂ Times Bridge, the global investments and partnershipsÂ armÂ of The Times Group. This long-termÂ partnership withÂ Times Bridge will give Smule a strategic edge as it scales up operations in India, its second-largest international market.
With 50 million monthly active users, Smule is transforming the music landscape from one of passive listening to collaborative creation and expressive sharing. On this platform, users are able to collaborate with and listen to all types of music, with anyone from anywhere in the world. To support this vision, Times Bridge has entered into a strategic partnership with Smule and concluded an investment worth over $20 million in the company.
âIndian audiences are passionate about connecting through music. We want to enhance those connections in an authentic way and we are thrilled to partner with Times Bridge to marshal the best of The Times Group on Smuleâs behalf,â said Jeffrey Smith, Smuleâs CEO and co-founder.
âSmule is about empowering our community to do more of what they love â from singing with their favourite celebrities to collaborating with friends to discovering new music. We're thrilled to find a partner that both shares our vision and hasÂ the cultural insights and market reach to deliver it,â Smith added.
Rishi Jaitly, CEO of Times Bridge, said, âTimes Bridgeâs mission is to bring the worldâs best ideas toÂ India and share Indiaâs best insights with the world.Â Smule is a deeply original, bold idea with a mission of changing the way the world experiences music. Our investment will advance Smuleâs music mission across the Indian subcontinent and unlock the creativity of many millions along the way. We are delighted to be working with a partner who approaches India with the empathy, conviction and optimism that the Indian market warrants.â
Times Bridge will also guide Smule in engaging Indiaâs multi-lingual music culture. Times Bridge will partner on varied aspects such as community building, collaborations with top artists, targeted regional programmes and advertising. Smule is the first social music platform to partner with Times Bridge in India.
With this investment, Smule plans to increase its exposure in the Indian digital music market and grow the market organically. Smule is keen to tap into Indiaâs flourishing diverse music culture and isÂ pioneering a unique way for people to create and engage with music. In May 2017, Smule raised $54 million in a financing round led by Chinese technology giant Tencent Holdings Ltd.Â