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Tencent Increases Stake in Indian Streaming Giant Gaana with $40 Million in New Debt Funding

Indian streaming service Gaana has raised $40 million in debt funding from Tencent, the Chinese tech giant that owns 20% of Universal Music Group. Gaana, which is also backed by The Times Internet, the digital arm of India media conglomerate the Times Group, also passed a resolution to increase its commercial borrowing ceiling in order to get funds from Tencent Cloud Europe, according to a report at Entracker.  

Gaana previously raised $51 million in debt funding in September 2020 — $41 million from Tencent and $10 million from The Times Internet — and $115 million through an equity sale to Tencent in February 2018.     

Gaana leads the Indian music streaming market with 185 million monthly users, as of August 2020. Other rivals include JioSaavn, formed by the 2018 merger of Jio and Saavn, at the time the two largest streaming competitors in India. JioSaavn CEO Rishi Malhotra told Billboard in March 2020 that the service had between 100 and 200 million monthly users. Spotify is a latecomer to India, having launched there in Dec. 2018.