The number of daily active users of Snapchat in India has jumped 40% year-on-year in the quarter ending June, prompting Snap Inc. to launch its first local office in Mumbai to support further growth.

The local team will focus on expanding strategic partnerships, building an engaged community of creators and users as well as servicing local advertisers.

In an interview with Gadgets 360, Jared Grusd, Snap’s chief strategy officer talked about the opportunities for advertisers to engage with the Snap community.

“The business model of Snapchat is to participate in the advertising community and to create a platform where marketers and advertisers work with us as part of our ecosystem in order to build a vibrant community,” he said. “And so over time, I think we will scale out the business model too.”

Snap has already worked with a few brands like Pepsi, OnePlus and Cadbury in India. It had also launched SnapKit partnerships with JioSaavn and that help Snapchat users to share and post music content on the photo app. (For more read WARC’s What we know about marketing on Snapchat.)

The new office builds upon prior moves made by the company to expand its footprint in India. In 2018, it launched ‘Discover in India’ in partnership with ten local publishers, a feature to provide local content across genres including news, cultural and current affairs. In July, Snapchat had hosted its first ‘Creator Summit’ in Mumbai, aimed at engaging with local creator community.

It also introduced four Indian languages (Hindi, Marathi, Gujarati, and Punjabi) to the app with plans to launch an additional five languages before end of the year.

Earlier this year, Snap had announced the appointment of its first employee based in India, Durgesh Kaushik as the head of Market Development. In an interview with Quartz India, Kaushik said the company doesn’t consider other social apps such as TikTok, Twitter or Instagram as competitors.

“These apps have a different purpose, they serve the need for content consumption,” he said. “Snapchat, on the other hand, lets you connect with your close friends or a group of selected users. We don’t want to encourage people to connect with billions of people like others do.”

Globally the number of Snapchat users has increased 8% since this time last year to 203 million, the company said. The user bump in India is partially attributed to the release of its rebuilt app for Android users in April of this year.

The end of July also saw the launch of its first global ad campaign, the first unveiled under Snap’s first chief marketing officer Kenny Mitchell, who joined from McDonald’s in April, that positions it as an app where ‘Real Friends’ can connect. Within Asia, the campaign was executed in India and Australia, where the company has a sizable user base.

Sourced from The Drum, Gadgets 360, Quartz India; additional content by WARC staff