Pocket FM concludes first ESOP buyback

The buyback witnessed active participation from both current and former employees


Pocket FM, the audio entertainment platform, has recently concluded its inaugural Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP) buyback, amounting to $8.3 million, as announced by the company on 1 April.

The buyback witnessed active participation from both current and former employees, as the company expressed its commitment to recognising the contributions of its teams. This development follows close on the heels of Pocket FM’s successful Series D funding round in March, wherein it raised $103 million, valuing the company at $750 million.

ESOPs have become instrumental in rewarding employees and subsequently buying back at lucrative rates, thereby facilitating wealth generation for early contributors.

Established in 2018 by Nayak, Prateek Dixit and Nishanth Srinivas, Pocket FM boasts a vast library comprising over 100,000 hours of content, including more than 2,000 exclusive audio series and over 4,00,000 episodes spanning various genres such as romance, drama, thriller, fantasy and science fiction, available in English, Hindi as well as multiple Indian regional languages such as Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Bengali, KKannada
and Marathi.
The platform operates on a freemium model, offering users free access to a limited number of episodes every 24 hours, with the option to unlock additional content by purchasing virtual coins—a strategy reminiscent of popular mobile gaming platforms.

As of December, Pocket FM recorded an annualised revenue rate (ARR) of $150 million worldwide, achieved within a span of less than two years, and exhibiting a quarterly growth rate of 57 per cent. With a committed investment of $40 million towards this endeavour, Pocket FM aims to attain a global ARR of $100 million by 2025.

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