2014 is all set to start on a good note for the Indian startup ecosystem. According to TC, Facebook is eyeing to acquire the Bangalore based year and half old startup Little Eye Labs for a deal size expected to be in the range of $10-15 million. Sources say that companies exchanged the term sheets few weeks ago, and that a final announcement could be made by mid-January.
Earlier at the beginning of December rumors were ripe that Facebook is all set to make its first acquisition of a product firm in India. Facebook has ignored to comment on the development but Kumar Rangarajan, co-founder of Little Eye labs acknowledged that the company was in discussions with Facebook.
If the deal goes through it would be a big news for Little Eye Labs, founded in May 2012, known to build performance analysis and monitoring tools that identify and fix performance problems for Android app developers. The startup was formed by four geeks – Giridhar Murthy, who has worked at Apple Inc earlier; Kumar Rangarajan, who has worked at IBM and HP; Satyam Kandula, an IIT Kharagpur alumnus; and Lakshman Kakkirala, who has also worked at IBM, besides Yahoo!. Rangarajan is currently the CEO of Little Eye.
The startup has around seven employees and earlier this year had received an investment between $100,000 and $200,000 from early-stage start-up incubator GSF Accelerator. GSF’s Brij Bhasin is also an advisor to Little Eye Labs.
The startup had first come into attention of Facebook in Seedcamp, London, where the startup was refining its product along with 20 other companies.
Facebook, which now calls itself a mobile first company, has been working on its mobile strategy for some time now at a time when it is facing tough challenge from its rival Twitter. The new acquisition will strengthen Facebook’s mobile base. In fact it is being told that Little Eye Labs also pitched Twitter, but sources say that Facebook seemed to offer a better deal.
To get better clarity on the development we might have to wait for a fortnight. Nevertheless, it is good news for the Indian startup eco-system where acquisitions of such profiles are still not common.