Hike Stickerchat the Indian messaging app has shut down its operations. The company’s chief executive officer Kavin Bharti Mittal announced the shutdown on January 6. The app has been removed from Playstore and Apple’s App Store.
Hike, the messaging app was backed by SoftBank Group Corp. and was aimed to compete against Whatsapp.
Kavin Bharti Mittal tweeted, “Today we’re announcing that we will be sunsetting StickerChat in Jan’21. We thank you all for giving us your trust. We wouldn’t be here without you. All your data will be available to download in the app.”
The company urged its users to export their chats to another messaging app by 11:59 pm on January 14, 2021. “You can continue to reach us on [email protected] for any issues till 15th Feb 2021,” the statement further read.
Hike valued at $1.4 billion was started by billionaire Kavin Bharti Mittal son of Sunil Bharti Mittal, chairman of India’s No. 2 telecom carrier, Bharti Airtel Ltd. Hike failed over several years to displace Facebook Inc.’s rival app as India’s go-to venue for social media and mobile communications.
The messaging app was competing with the likes of WhatsApp, and other apps like Signal and Telegram. Mittal stated that Indian messaging apps cannot thrive unless the government bans western messaging companies.
The platform which had a user base of over a million has still not disclosed the reason for shutting down operations.
Hike has ventured into adjacent areas such as no-frills phones and expanded even into spheres such as mobile entertainment. Over the past year or more, Mittal has steadily diversified Hike into social and virtual-mobile products. His company will continue to develop its Vibe social media app and work on a new gaming product called Rush, he wrote on Twitter.