As more and more shopping happens online, video has an important role in helping viewers discover new products and find expert advice they trust. Every day, people come to YouTube to compare products, watch reviews and find recommendations from their favorite creators. Today, we are taking another step to help viewers discover and buy products from local businesses: we have signed a definitive agreement to acquire simsim and expect to complete the transaction in the coming weeks.
simsim is helping small businesses in India transition to e-commerce by using the power of video and creators. The simsim app serves as a platform to connect local businesses, influencers and customers. Here’s how it works: creators post video reviews about products from local businesses, and viewers can buy those products directly through the app. Videos are available in three local languages including Hindi, Tamil and Bengali, enabling retailers of all sizes to reach buyers through video in their preferred language.
For over 15 years, small businesses have used YouTube to expand their presence online -- and many of them use YouTube to reach customers outside of their local community, from Interior Designers to Silk Sarees sellers. By bringing simsim and YouTube together, our goal is to help small businesses and retailers in India reach new customers in even more powerful ways. There will be no immediate changes to simsim, the app will continue operating independently while we work on ways to showcase simsim offers to YouTube viewers.
Today’s announcement builds on our ongoing investments in India, such as the India Digitization Fund. As we work with our partners to expand access to the Internet, we know online video will continue to grow as the primary way to find information, entertainment and connections in India. With over 2500 YouTube creators with over one million subscribers, and the success of YouTube Shorts, which we launched in India first, we’re committed to bringing the best of YouTube to India and growing the creator community by making it even easier for the new generation of mobile-first creators to get started.
In a joint statement, simsim cofounders, Amit Bagaria, Kunal Suri and Saurabh Vashishtha said, “We started simsim with the mission of helping users across India shop online with ease, enabled through small sellers and brands showcasing and selling their products using the power of content by trusted influencers. Being a part of the YouTube and Google ecosystem furthers simsim in its mission. We cannot think of a better ecosystem in which to build simsim, in terms of technology, reach, creator networks and culture. We can’t wait to be part of YouTube and are excited to build simsim within the most admired tech company in the world.”
We’re inspired by the opportunity in India and look forward to working with the simsim team to build the future of online video commerce in India.
Posted by Gautam Anand, VP, YouTube APAC