Nearly a week after Inc42 exclusively reported that Reliance is acquiring chatbot startup Haptik, the company has now announced that Reliance Industries via its subsidiary Reliance Jio Digital Services Limited has entered into a definitive business transfer agreement with Haptik Infotech Pvt Ltd (Haptik) for 87% stake in the company.
The total transaction size will be for about INR 700 Cr ($102.3 Mn) of which the initial business transfer is INR 230 Cr. The rest of the outlay will be invested in growth and expansion, Reliance said.
The Haptik team will continue to drive growth of the business, including the enterprise platform as well as digital consumer assistants.
With the deal, Reliance Jio is looking to leverage Haptik’s capabilities across various devices and touch points in the consumer’s journey. Reliance said that the investment focus is on the enhancement and expansion of the platform, with an addressable market opportunity of over 1 Bn users in India.
Akash Ambani, director, Reliance Jio, said “We believe voice interactivity will be the primary mode of interaction for Digital India. We are delighted to announce this partnership, and look forward to working with the experienced team of Haptik in realizing this vision for offering greater connectivity and rich communication experiences to the billion+ Indian consumers.”
This partnership will also give a boost to Haptik’ s existing enterprise grade business, with the company continuing to build innovative AI solutions for corporates globally.
Aakrit Vaish, cofounder and CEO, Haptik said, “We started with the idea that conversational interfaces will cause a paradigm shift in the way people get things done. Over the course, we have built various products across both consumer and enterprise businesses, with the backbone always being a full stack chat and voice enabled AI technology platform.”
Founded in 2013 by Aakrit Vaish and Swapan Rajdev, Mumbai-based Haptik lets users chat with their voice assistants to complete daily tasks such as online shopping, travel bookings, food delivery among others. The company signed a strategic partnership with Times Internet in April 2016 to further develop its product and improve its AI capabilities.
The company has worked with over 50 brands such as Samsung, Future Group, OYO and KFC. The company expanded to the US in 2018 and the UK in 2019.
According to filings accessed by Inc42, in FY18 Haptik reported a total revenue of INR 4.58 Cr (189% increase from FY17) and expense of INR 27.85 Cr (10% drop from FY17). Its net losses for FY18 stand at INR 22.54 Cr.
In light of Haptik’s acquisition, it looks like Reliance is gearing up to create a complete ecosystem of products similar to Amazon Alexa’s ecosystem built for Jio’s vast subscriber base.
With Reliance’s new found interest in fintech, ecommerce and retail, which are currently the fastest growing sectors of the Indian economy, the company’s latest move shows that it is now fully prepared to takeover the Indian internet.