Father of Android Andy Rubin’s startup buys India’s CloudMagic

Father of Android Andy Rubin. Photo: Bloomberg

Father of Android Andy Rubin. Photo: Bloomberg

Android creator Andy Rubin’s consumer electronics startup Essential Products has acquired Indian-origin email startup CloudMagic, less than three months after the founder of the startup had said its flagship email app Newton Mail was shutting down. Mint spoke to two people aware of the transaction, but could not immediately ascertain the terms of the deal. An Essential Products spokeswoman confirmed the CloudMagic acquisition, but declined to share further details.

“We are always on the lookout for companies with great technology and talent to help accelerate our product roadmap,” Essential Products said in an email.

CloudMagic was launched in 2013, with an eponymous free email service across all platforms, and broke out as a major player in the space. In 2016, the product was relaunched as Newton Mail, as a premium, paid-for subscription-based email app. Newton Mail quickly acquired a niche following, with more than 40,000 paid subscribers.

However, the app failed to compete against larger established companies in the sector, such as Google and Microsoft, both of whom offer free apps, which currently command a global following with hundreds of millions of users.

In a post on Medium, online publishing platform, in August this year, CloudMagic founder and serial entrepreneur Rohit Nadhani conceded that Newton Mail had failed to take off and thus was forced to take the decision to shut down the app.

“It was a tough business decision. We explored various business models but couldn’t successfully figure out profitability & growth over the long term. It was hard. The market for premium consumer mail apps is not big enough, and it faces stiff competition from high-quality free apps from Google, Microsoft, and Apple. We put up a hard and honest fight, but it was not enough to overcome the bundling & platform default advantages enjoyed by the large tech companies,” Nadhani had said in the 6 August post.

Nadhani had added at the time that CloudMagic would “continue to operate and the incredible team will be focusing on new and innovative projects.”

CloudMagic was born out of another Bengaluru-based startup that was founded by Nadhani and sold earlier this year. CloudMagic was incubated inside Webyog, which built tools for database management, and was spun off as a separate company in 2013.

Earlier this year in April, Webyog was acquired by Texas-based business software firm Idera as part of an all-cash deal for an undisclosed amount.

First Published: Fri, Dec 07 2018. 09 53 AM IST

Source: Livemint