Gurgaon-based visual blogging platform bluegape has raised US$600,000 from ah! Ventures and Rudy Gopalakrishnan of Fidelity Ventures, with participation from Times Internet, the digital unit of Indian media giant Times Group.
The deal was closed on CLUBah, an online equity investment platform owned by ah! Ventures.
The startup will use the capital to improve its technology platform and expand the engineering team.
bluegape was founded in August 2011 by Ayush Baghla and Ayush Varshney. It started as a merchandise business before pivoting to the current model in January this year. It gives users a platform to create and consume content in a visual format. People use the site to create niche blogs on fashion, feminism or celebrity fan club, etc.
Currently, the platform claims to have 15 million unique visitors every month and around 100,000 posts are getting created every month. The startup had earlier raised US$184,000 in April 2015 from Gopalakrishnan and ah! Ventures.
“Our vision is to make (the) communication of ideas and knowledge very easy. On Facebook, Instagram and SnapChat, we are connected to our close group of friends and they are like your private social identity. bluegape, on the other hand, will be your public social identity which is about self-expression with the world,” said Co-founder and CEO Baghla.
“In today’s plugged-in world, nothing is more fast-paced than technology. It constantly evolves to meet our ever-increasing need to stay connected. Technology has enabled the world to shrink into a global village where everybody is connected through one platform or the other. bluegape is a social media disruptor; it’s the black swan,” said Abhijeet Kumar, Co-founder of ah! ventures.
CLUB ah! is an angel network of over 450 investors, including some of the renowned angels and early stage VCs that represent the maturity of Indian early stage investment ecosystem. Started in 2012, the CLUB ah! platform boasts of over 2000-plus startups, 450-plus seed/angel investors and over 60 VCs and intuitional investors. It also has an impact investment network and a mentor network to assist startups in their growth and expansion.
Till date, CLUB ah! has invested close to US$6 million across 15 startups.