It is quite something, the number of things Yourstory has been up to. And no, not events. If you have the time, it is quite possible to be subsumed by the copious number of articles churned out by the company every day. There’s, of course, their bread and butter startup coverage, and then on top of that, there are stories from social story, her story, Yourstory TV and Yourstory German. And then something called Mystory, the company’s blogging platform ambition. Like Medium. Like LinkedIn stories.
YourStory Media Private Limited
As per MCA records
Founder and CEO
What has YourStory been up to, in the last year?
If you’d read our Yourstory BTN last year, you’d pretty much be on top of this. So, in 2016-17, the company’s multiple language strategy played out okay. That and specific domains like Herstory and Socialstory. But of all the things the company is doing, the blogging platform idea is quite interesting. It is also something the company has been pushing quite a bit. So you simply log in and publish a story in pre-defined categories, like ‘get inspired’ and ‘survival’, among several others. Earlier this year, the company also raised money. About $3 million (Rs 21 crore) from Kalaari Capital Partners, Qualcomm Asia Pacific Pte Ltd, 3ONE4 Capital Advisors LLP and UC-RNT Fund. The $3 million is part of a $6 million Series B that was subsequently announced.
Rs 10.4 crore: That’s the total money Yourstory made. Rs 10 crore from operations and the rest in other income.
Rs 3.8 crore: That’s the total money the company made from events. It is a decent step up compared to last year’s about Rs 2.1 crore. It is interesting to note that Yourstory’s event hosting charges though haven’t grown at a similar clip. As of March 31, 2017, the company spent Rs 1.5 crore in event hosting charges, pretty much the same as last year.
Rs 6.1 crore: That’s the total money YourStory made from native advertisements. Simply put, the Yourstory machine is an engine cranking out native ads. A native ad is basically a story which looks and reads like a story but has been paid for by an advertiser. Compared to last year, the number is pretty much stagnant. The math though makes for interesting reading. Over a period of 350 publishing days, the company is making Rs 1.7 lakh every day from native advertising. And this is a good number because whatever the company makes in native ads, it can almost, yes almost, cover the cost of employee salaries and expense. That comes next.
Rs 6.8 crore: As of March 2017, this is the total expense of staff salaries and expenses. Employee strength and pay have ballooned, year on year (was about Rs 4.4 crore as of March 31, 2016). If Yourstory is paying twice as much money for its employees, the bang for the buck is coming from events.
Rs 2.6 crore: That’s the total money Yourstory spent on freelancer expenses. We’d mentioned this last year, too, because it kind of stands out in the financials. Last year, the company spent Rs 3 crore in freelancer expense, and the year before that, only Rs 54 lakh. Freelancer expense is the money the company pays for journalistic and authored articles to people who are not on the company’s payroll.
Rs 2.4 crore: That’s the total amount of money the company spent on business development and sales promotion. Compared to last year, March 2016 at Rs 68 lakh, that’s a jump of about 4X. Clearly the company is trying to make itself more visible. It is an interesting expense item though because media companies are lousy advertisers themselves. This, of course, augurs well for technology companies like Google and Facebook. Clearly, in the world we live now, the line that defines a media company is kind of getting blurred.
Rs 7.9 crore: That’s the total loss made by the company. As of March 2016, the company recorded a loss of Rs 5.9 crore. And the year before, Rs 19 lakh. Yourstory’s losses are climbing. Fast.
The funding should last Yourstory a while. The company’s focus though is to grow the native advertising business. On the events side, the company wants to grow beyond just startup events. So, it wants to partner with the government and do joint events. For instance, with entities like the Niti Aayog. So over a period of time, you will see Yourstory selling the Indian startup story to the government and to companies outside India.