LiveJournal Coming To India, First Stop In Worldwide Expansion

imageLiveJournal’s new owner plans to launch the blog community in India in the next few months. Moscow-based Sup bought the host from MovableType maker SixApart in December and now plans an internationalisation drive; Sup CEO Andrew Paulson told me first stop is “moving aggressively in to India”.

“We were in India for a couple of weeks in May, we met as many of the players as we could – both offline, online, TV, mobile – and wanted to figure out what kind of an opportunity there was for us there,” Paulson said. “We wanted to develop a strategy for the best way to move in to India, where we have a very passionate but rather small audience.

“It would provide an excellent test case in trying to seed a community because at least our initial steps would be in English – in the long term, English would not be the predominant language for LiveJournal in India but, in order for us to have content immediately that’s interesting to Indian users around which they can form their own communities, it makes sense to go to India, as opposed to some place where we would be working with a completely clean slate.” There are not yet plans to staff up in India but: “Beginning of next year, we’ll take a look at the results we’ve achieved and take a decision as to what we want that operation to look like; we’re being very pragmatic at this point.” Sup is working with the BlogWorks social media consultancy for the launch.

Paulson said Sup had more than doubled LiveJournal’s Russian traffic since buying from SixApart, saying the San Francisco company hadn’t paid attention to monetising the blogger site. International expansion will also look at north Africa, the Middle East, south America and Kazakhstan. More from my interview with Andrew Paulson at paidContent:UK