On July 12 last week, Info Edge (India) Ltd announced the launch of ‘Asknaukri.com’, which purports to be the first website of its kind in India. With this Naukri.com completes the circle around the concept of online career needs in India. (BOM: NAUKRI)
For the uninitiated, ‘Naukri’ in Hindi means job, and Naukri.com is the first Indian job portal and the flagship website of Info Edge. When Naukri.com was commercially launched in October 1997, it had 50 clients to speak of.
Today with a client base exceeding 25,000 companies, Naukri.com is considered as the largest job portal in India. With an inventory of over 9 million resumes – about 10,000 added daily for 82,000 job listings – it contributes 85% to company’s topline. Now, Asknaukri.com is a step in its quest to retain the top position by filling the much-needed gap of career guidance that job seekers look for.
Info Edge, a private limited company since May 1, 1995, went public in November last year. The excellent brand recall of Naukri proved a boon for the company as the IPO was over subscribed by nearly 55 times, thus mopping up Rs.1703 million (USD 42.2 million) in the process.
The Rs.10 paid-up share at the upper price band of Rs.320 (USD 7.93) during IPO now quotes at Rs.850 (USD 21.07) level, down from all-time high of Rs.1030 (USD 25.53) recorded a week back pursuant to the launch of Asknaukri.com.
For the year ending March 31, 2007 Info Edge’s revenue has been USD 35 million representing 69% YOY growth, and net profit of USD 6.4 million. The market cap is a respectable Rs.2300 crore (USD 570 million) that represents 19.5% of the fully diluted post issue paid-up equity capital of the company. Evidently, the company is valued astronomically high in Indian stock market.
What is it that clicks with Info Edge? To be sure, it’s not only Naukri.com or its recent avatars like Asknaukri.com or Naukrigulf.com that are responsible for the company’s glory at the stock exchange.
Armed with portal knowledge, Info Edge is also in 2 lucrative offerings – Jeevansathi.com, a matrimonial site, and 99acres.com, a real estate portal.
Anything related with matrimonial is a booming business in India, and though Jeevansathi.com, acquired in September 2004, is the 3rd largest in its category, it nevertheless is a decent money-churner for Info Edge. Jeevansathi.com already has 1.48 million registrations under its belt, while 2,300 profiles get added daily.
99acres.com on the other hand is a strong player in the real estate arena, which once again is a booming sector in keeping with India’s economic upsurge, and ensures robust business for Info Edge. For the record, 99acres was launched in September 2005, and it presently has more than 60,000 listings covering 23 Indian cities.
There is no doubt the 3 arms of Info Edge’s portal business will continue to grow in the foreseeable future, as the total market for each is also growing at a healthy clip. Info Edge seems to have a much better strategy for its growth than Rediff, on which we reported earlier. Whereas Rediff (Nasdaq: REDF) is haphazard and all over the place, Info Edge is in 3 simple, high-growth verticals, and as you know, I like verticals. In fact, rather than acquiring Rediff, if i were Yahoo, I would try to acquire Info Edge.
Info Edge has emerged 43rd out of the Top 100 mid sized companies in India and 7th in total average returns in the Rs.50-100 crore (USD 12.5 – 25 million) category.