Stockholm: Phone directory app Truecaller, which has nearly half of its 100 million users in India, will expand its base in the country with a research and development (R&D) centre and more marketing personnel.
Started in 2009 by Alan Mamedi and Nami Zarringhalam, the Swedish company provides with an application that helps a user search for contact information (based on name, number or address), identify incoming calls, block calls one does not want to receive, and make personal contact suggestions based on time and place.
The free mobile application shows name of the person calling to a user even if the number is not saved in the phone.
"India is a very unique market and when one starts growing in India, one can grow really fast. We have an office in Gurgaon. We will be adding more people in India next year for our marketing team", said Mamedi.
"Right now we have one person in India. We are also planning R&D centres probably in Bangalore or Pune," Mamedi added.
Truecaller, he says, is installed in around 40 per cent of smartphones in India. The country has over an estimated 115 million smartphone subscribers, behind only China and the US.
The app in most of the phones is pre-installed including Micromax in India.
Mamedi and Zarringhalam were struck with the idea of this application when they found that there wasn't any single app to trace calls.
"We thought we need to solve this problem ourselves. We wanted to make people-search readily available to anyone. That was how Truecaller was born," said Mamedi.
"For the people here in India, blocked and spam calls are a big issue. And Truecaller helps in identifying callers and even blocking unwanted ones," he said.
The company currently has 60 employees from nearly 40 nationalities in its head office here.
"Of them four are Indians. Seventy per cent of the staff are programmers, two of them are women from India," he said.
Recently Truecaller set up office in Beijing. Next year, it plans to start offices in Dubai, Sao Paulo and in Kenya.
Truecaller also runs another app, Truedialer, which offers users details of a person before the outgoing call is connected.
Launched in October, Truedialer already has more than two million users.
In October, the company received USD 60 million in funding from venture capitalist firms like Sequoia Capital India, Atomico, and Kleiner Perkins Caufield Byers.
A part of the funding from Sequoia Capital will be utilised by Truecaller for expanding its user base in India while also hiring more people.
In December, Truecaller said it has crossed the 100 million user base milestone.
As of November, India accounted for over 45 million users and 600,000 new users were being added every week from the country.
The firm has also updated the app to focus on predictive style features, suggesting who to contact based on call history, time of day, and place.
It has been fully redesigned to provide easier discovery and simpler navigation, and rebuilt to make it much lighter in terms of space consumption.
"This is the first step we are taking to make Truecaller more intelligent and personal. We've made these advancements to save time for our users and make their lives less complicated when they want to get in touch with someone," he added.
Alan Mamedi plans to visit India early next year to speak on entrepreneurship at IIT-Mumbai.