Value Added Services in India attract the VC Pie
India’s runaway success in mobile telephony has contributed to value-added services (VAS) for mobile and Internet emerging as the biggest investment focus for venture capitalists, with investments expected to double to $500 million this year.
India is now among the top three markets for mobile and Internet VAS along with the US and China.
There are about 291 Million Mobile subscribers in India and more than 38 Million of those are now accessing the Internet.
India’s subscriber base is expected to be at a staggering 500 Million by 2011.
In India, VAS accounted for 13% of total operator revenues of $13 billion in 2006, grew to 13% of 19 billion in 2007 and is projected to hit 14% of total projected mobile operator revenues of 33 billion in 2010.
Growth of VAS can only be impressive going forward, considering the trends displayed in China’s mobile market. A case study by next generation services firm, Telenity shows China Mobile’s average daily SMS volume to be close to one billion, with strong non-SMS data business growth.
VAS applications include business productivity (work force management), entertainment, messaging and collaboration and lastly, location and presence. Entertainment encompasses movies, sports, astrology, ring-back tones, music, video, TV, chat and content.