Since launching in January 2016, Aniwa.lk has made an indelible mark in Sri Lanka’s online space.
Aniwa.lk differentiates itself by steering away from the all too common Sinhala gossip website brimming with celebrity news and political scandal, and publishes wholly-original light and useful articles on topics including lifestyle, fashion, arts and culture, health, travel, food, and trending social issues. Conceived, researched and voiced by a team of 10 content creators, Aniwa.lk is now the most visited site for original Sinhala lifestyle content.
This popularity has translated into substantial visibility for the content marketing pieces deployed by Aniwa.lk for leading Sri Lankan brands including Rexona and Astra, as well as for international clients such as Vista Rooms. Through these campaigns Aniwa.lk has proven their openness to content innovation by engaging with brands willing to take a modern approach in communicating their message, using sponsored native advertising through articles and videos to reach their target markets.
Given Aniwa.lk’s expanding impact on the Sinhala language web and its enthusiastic reception by marketers, it was an easy decision for the Lankan Angel Network (LAN) to invest in the promising start-up. LAN’s goal of scaling the Sri Lankan startup economy drives them to seek out and invest in startups that show significant growth and profitability potential, and Aniwa.lk fits the bill.
“Just 10 months after our launch, we are already ranked 85th for Sri Lanka overall on Alexa.com – a website ranking service – as well as being among the top 30 locally operated content sites,” said Aniwa.lk co-founder Anisha Yasaratne. Aniwa.lk currently publishes 140 articles and videos a month on their website and on their Facebook page, racking up over 8,000,000 page views since launch with more than 625,000 unique users per month – a number that still continues to grow every month. More than two-thirds of these visitors engage with the site through smartphones.
“Furthermore, over 84 percent of Aniwa.lk’s visitors are between 18 and 44 years of age, with as many as 40 percent being female, an important demographic to note. The Aniwa.lk Facebook page has also been a huge hit, quickly receiving over 130,000 Page likes, with a weekly Facebook Reach of over 3.8 million and Engagement (including likes, comments, shares, and clicks) of over 450,000 per week. Video has also been a big success for Aniwa.lk, and the current target is over 1,000,000 video views per month.
Launched by Anisha Yasaratne, Nanda Abeysekera and Gehan Dias, Aniwa.lk has benefited greatly in terms of advice and contacts following the investment by LAN. LAN comprises of well-respected individuals in the local start-up eco-system who have a passion for promoting entrepreneurship, comprising individual investors, venture capitalists, and angel investors. A Sri Lankan-first, LAN was launched with the purpose of bringing together the local investor and mentor community and to scale up the start-up ecosystem.