Ykone buys majority stake in Indian influencer agency Barcode

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The French group Ykone has increased its global reach. The TF1 group sold the group, a significant player in the influencer marketing industry, to Future Technology Retail, an investment firm. Future Technology Retail is the French arm of Saudi private equity firm BinDawood Holding. Ykone has revealed that it has acquired a 70% share in Barcode, an Indian firm that is among the top experts in the nation when it comes to influencer and content marketing.


Ykone, which established an office in Bangalore, India in 2017, did not disclose the transaction’s value. “The acquisition of Barcode further strengthens Ykone’s position, with a turnover of $100 million and a workforce of over 300 employees,” the group stated in a news release. Ykone employed 155 people before to the transaction, and its fiscal 2023 revenue was $84 million. The acquisition “is a significant step for Ykone and its international expansion,” according to the company’s founder and CEO, Olivier Billon, expanding the group’s reach in India and in “the broader Asia-Pacific region.”

Ykone was formed in 2008 and is now present in eighteen major cities across the globe, including Las Vegas, Hong Kong, Dubai, Milan, and Paris. It expanded its activities by acquiring two top agencies in Germany and Italy throughout the past two years. The most well-known feature of Ykone is its own Campaygn digital influencer marketing platform, which allows its roughly 100 clients—mostly high-end brands like Burberry, Gucci, Chloé, Hugo Boss, and Prada—to monitor and control social media campaigns in real time.

Rahul Khanna created Barcode in 2019. It currently employs 150 people and runs out of three offices. Multinational corporations such as Unilever, Amazon, YouTube, Myntra, Warner Music, MG Motors, Budweiser, and Glance, along with high-end labels like Chopard, are among its clientele. Barcode has over 350,000 influencers in its network, and in the last few years, it has organized over 40,000 brand partnerships with them.

A Bain & Co. analysis projects that by 2030, the Indian luxury sector would be valued $200 billion. Therefore, Ykone’s acquisition of Barcode is a crucial step that will aid the company in solidifying its place in one of the luxury goods sectors with the fastest rate of growth in the globe, which has a massive social media following of over 500 million users.

“Barcode’s Click Media talent management division represents around 20 well-known Indian actors and influencers, including Karishma Sharma (2.2 million followers) and Rohit Zinjurke (30 million followers). The French group said, “This significantly boosts Ykone’s portfolio and strengthens their ability to connect brands with well-known influencers in the Indian market.”

Ethan Sullivan

Ethan's penchant for the pulse of the fashion world extends to covering lifestyle topics, offering readers a seamless blend of the latest style updates and lifestyle trends.

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