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Frrole raises Rs 1.5 crore via angel funding

MUMBAI: Bengaluru-based data start-up Frrole has raised $245,000 (approx. Rs 1.5 crore) in angel funding from eight investors led by former head of Yahoo! R&D centre in India Sharad Sharma, Google India MD Rajan Anandan and Eka Software founder Manav Garg through crowd-funding platform LetsVenture.

The other angel investors include Coke president for APAC Atul Singh, Sunil Kalra and Bhupen Shah of Sling Media/DishTV and India Internet Group (IIG).

With this round, Sharad Sharma joins the board and the investors hold a combined stake of 23 per cent.

The company hopes to deploy these funds over the next 15 months towards expanding in other geographies, especially Southeast Asia – Singapore and Indonesia, as also in building operational capabilities, expanding reach within India.

Frrole, part of Microsoft Ventures Accelerator’s 2013 winter programme, launched its Twitter data-based offering targeted at media and entertainment verticals.

It is a social intelligence engine that performs analysis across millions of data units in real time. It uses this analysis to build a local buzz graph where Frrole knows what each neighbourhood, city and country is talking about.

This Twitter data-based offering has three components—data APIs that allow clients to access Frrole data streams and use them to build or plug into any application and a visual suite that allows clients to select and integrate plug-and-play display applications into their products. It also comprises solutions allowing Frrole to work closely with clients for large projects that require complex data interactions.

It has 15 clients, including Times of India, MSN, UTV, Headlines Today and Indian Express, to name a few.

The company charges $100 per month per data stream and expects to generate revenue of Rs 500,000 (Rs 0.5 million) for this month.

As of now, the start-up claims to analyse over 10 million tweets daily and has sifted through over 100 million tweets since January this year.

Globally, Frrole competes with Mass Relevance, Wayin and Flowics. None of these players is present in the Indian market.

The funds have been raised via LetsVenture.com, an online platform that brings investors and start-ups on one domain. The Bangalore-based venture was set up by Shanti Mohan, Manish Singhal and Sanjay Jha in May last year.

While Mohan and Singhal are serial entrepreneurs, Jha was VP of product engineering at Aptean. Mohan has also worked with Hewlett-Packard (HP) as senior programme manager prior to becoming a business consultant. Apart from helping start-ups to raise capital, LetsVenture allows them to get their business plans reviewed by experts and connect to mentors.

Earlier, fan merchandising venture Bluegape had raised funds through LetsVenture.