Stage plans to use the funds for building a stronger content library and launching subscription service on their platform, it added.
The platform was launched in 2019 by Vinay Singhal, Shashank Vaishnav and Parveen Singhal. The artist-based OTT platform has content in art forms such as comedy, poetry, folk, and storytelling.
It has over 1.5 million downloads in Haryanvi dialect alone, and is now available in Rajasthani dialect as well, the statement said. Stage plans to launch new dialects such as Bhojpuri, Maithili and Magadhi in 2021, and aims to reach about 500 million users in the next five years, it added.
“While the Hindi/English language dominated OTT platforms have changed the decades old entertainment rules, we believe vernacular OTT platforms will be the next wave, considering we have large regional media consumption in the country. Tamil, Telugu, Marathi, Bengali are some of the biggest regional content churning industries with a much higher viewer engagement statistics,” Inflection Point Ventures co-founder Mitesh Shah said.
He added that focusing on the diversity of the country, Stage is gradually taking up different regions and increasing its penetration.
“We believe that languages are just an urban concept in our country, the moment we move beyond the urban settlements, everyone speaks a dialect. The great thing is most of these dialects are as big as some of the European languages. It is not just a great business opportunity to create quality content in these dialects, but absolutely necessary to preserve the unique diversity and culture of our country for the next generation,” Vinay Singhal, co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Stage, said.