Clubhouse icon seen on a smartphone screen (Image: AP Photo/Mark Schiefelbein)
Clubhouse, an audio-based social network for iOS, have raised a Series C led by the VC firm Andreessen Horowitz along with other major investors such as DST Global, Tiger Global, and Elad Gil.
However, Clubhouse did not disclose the scale of funding. According to a Bloomberg and The Information reports, the funding will value the company at $4 billion.
This funding comes just as the company is preparing for its Android launch next month. It has also launched payment features for creators for monetization recently.
Announcing the funding at the Clubhouse Townhall on April 18, co-founder Paul Davidson said, “It has been a whirlwind of a year since we did our Series B back in January. Clubhouse has grown a lot and there is so much to do. From keeping the service up to discovery algorithms to creator monetization and launching programmes like creator first. We are so excited to get this thing for you. We also want to make sure that we have the resources to do that.”
The co-founders, Davidson and Rohan Seth, added that the funding will allow them to support international growth, and heavily invest in localization and accessibility features, and launch more programmes like the Creator First accelerator to help creators get paid.
Seth said that the company will start testing Android this week and the launch is likely to happen country by country. The idea is to test it on a smaller set of beta users before to fix the bugs before wider roll out.
The company plans to launch Android in May 2021.
The Android launch comes even as its popularity has resulted in major tech companies investing in similar platforms. For instance Twitter has launched Twitter Spaces. Tech major Facebook is reportedly exploring similar products. Microsoft-owned LinkedIn, and Slack Technologies have announced that they are working on similar features.
Clubhouse in India
For the invite-only iOS app, the Android launch could be critical to expand its growth in overseas markets like India, which is Android-dominated. More than 90 percent of over 500 million smartphones users in India have Android phones.
According to data shared by App Annie, total number of downloads stand at 100,000 in India at the end of March, up from 65,000 as of March 9, 2021. According to media reports, total downloads stood at 12,000 till January 2021. Worldwide, total downloads are 13.4 million led by the US at 3.4 million and Japan at 1.8 million, according to the App Annie report.