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News Roundup: 9 Indian Startup News Stories That You Don’t Want To Miss This Week [23-28 April 2018]

News Roundup: 9 Indian Startup News Stories That You Don’t Want To Miss This Week [23-28 April 2018]

Important Indian Startup News Stories Of The Week [23-28 April 2018]

We bring to you the latest dope of the Indian startup news stories of the week from the Indian startup ecosystem.

This week, Flipkart got a major relief as Income Tax Appellate Tribunal (ITAT) rejected the revenue department’s argument that discounts rolled out by Flipkart should be reclassified as capital expenditure. Earlier, Flipkart lost its appeal against the Income Tax (IT) department over the reclassification of marketing expenditure and discounts as capital expenditure (capex) which involves a $17.2 Mn (INR 110 Cr) tax penalty on Flipkart on behalf of the tax assessed for FY15-16.

Important Indian Startup News Stories Of The Week

Quikr Valuations Falls By 12%

According To Swedish investor AB Kinnevik’s Annual Report 2017, Quikr’s Valuation Fell by 12% to $884.94 Mn for the period ending December 2017. Inc42 further analysed the Kinnevik’s annual report 2017 and confirmed the fluctuation in the fair market value of Quikr for the period ending December 2017. Kinnevik’s Q1 2018 Interim report is also released and the Quikr’s fair value for the period ending March 2018 remains the same, i.e. $159.29 Mn (SEK 1.4 Bn).

Future Group Will Soon Launch Its Grocery Delivery App

The app will route the deliveries through Future Group’s neighbour format stores, EasyDay. The stores’ service customers within a radius of 2-2.5 kms. The Easyday Club membership will cost INR 999, allowing consumers to buy from the convenience of their home and avail the membership benefits of faster delivery, and great deals.

Paytm Mall Gets $110 Mn Fund Infusion From SoftBank And Alibaba

Paytm Tap Card, PPB Reaches 100 Mn KYC Wallets And More

  • Paytm Tap Card uses near-field communication (NFC) technology to enable safe and convenient digital payments, completely offline at Paytm-issued NFC PoS terminals, in under a second. To make payments, users can add money from their Paytm account by scanning the QR code on the Tap Card and by authenticating it at any of the add value machines (AVM).
  • Paytm Payments Bank has claimed to reach 100 Mn KYC wallets. Every KYC customer has opened a wallet account with Paytm Payments Bank. Out of the total 100 Mn KYC wallets, around 76 Mn have been authenticated biometrically. The figure includes both full and minimum KYC customers.

Ola Launches Safety Council

Ola has set up a Safety Council with an aim to further strengthen the mobility safety ecosystem in the country. This council will bring together organisations and individual achievers from various sectors. This includes stakeholders working in areas such as urban transport, climate change, women’s safety, security management, traffic management and emergency management services.

Banks And Digital Wallets Target 30 Bn Digital Payments In FY 2018-19

The government is now eyeing a 50% increase in the volume of digital transactions, leading to around 30 Bn digital payments by the end of FY 2018-19. In order to achieve this, separate targets have been set for banks and digital wallets. While banks are required to reach a volume of 23.7 Bn transactions, the digital wallets are required to fill in the rest.

National Ecommerce Policy Framework May Get Finalised In 6 Months

The Indian ecommerce think tank, headed by Commerce Minister Suresh Prabhu, may finalise the framework around ecommerce policy in the next six months. The framework will deal around ecommerce sector issues like physical and digital infrastructure, regulatory regime, taxation policy, data flows, server localisation, intellectual property rights protection, FDI, amongst others.

Amazon India Plans, Echo Spot Launch And More

  • Amazon India has announced to launch five more fulfilment centres. It plans to increase the storage capacity in 2018 by 1.5x over the previous year. The new centres will be added in Bengaluru, Mumbai, Delhi, Vijayawada and Kolkata.
  • Amazon India’s food retail plans face a new roadblock. Amazon has now sought clarification from DIPP to understand if it can share some of the warehouse staff, entry and exit doors at warehouses, barcode machines, trolleys and other paraphernalia for its food-only venture with Also, it has sought to understand if it can maintain the “segregation virtually”.
  • Also, Amazon has finally brought ‘Echo Spot’ to India. Shaped like an alarm clock, this smart device is based on Alexa, which is Amazon’s voice-controlled virtual assistant. In addition to being available online, Echo Spot is now being sold at the Amazon Devices kiosks in Benglauru, Mumbai, and over 350 offline retail outlets across 20 cities in India.

Google Plans Solving For India Programme To Support Indian Startups

Google Launches ‘Solve For India’ Programme, Brings Curated Job Search Feature

Launched last year as an India-only pilot for mentorship and engagement by Google Developers Launchpad team, ‘Solve for India’ focusses on bringing the best of Google expertise across product, UX/UI and the latest technologies including machine learning and AI to help emerging startups that are focussing on building solutions that serves for India’s needs.

In another development, Google has launched a ‘Curated Job Search’ feature in India. This essentially means that a user will see job postings relevant to him or her from multiple sites, including others from company websites through open documentation. The company also claims that at present, Job search on Google has over a million listings across job types and industries from over 90K employers in the country.

Other Indian Startup News Stories Of The Week

Government Slams Facebook And CA With Second Notice Over Cryptic Response

The companies have been issued a deadline till May 10 to answer to the additional queries. After finding the first replies from CA “cryptic and evasive”, the government has sought further responses from the data mining company for five more posers from the company. “…It is self-evident that apart from being very cryptic, the unstated intention was to conceal more than reveal,” said the latest notice to Cambridge Analytica.

Facebook, YouTube And Others Introduce New Regulations

Facebook is publishing detailed guidelines for its services. The 27 pages elaborate work will include what services belong or doesn’t belong to Facebook. In a flash message, Twitter and Linkedin have also joined the bandwagon of policy updates.

Also, in a recent blog post, Youtube launches its community guidelines report where it wrote that the quarterly report will show the progress it is making in removing violative content from the platform. Also, by the end of the year, YouTube plans to refine its reporting systems and add additional data, including data on comments, the speed of removal, and policy removal reasons.

With New Privacy Regulations, Are Tech Companies Taking The Road To Redemption?

Linq Calls In For Free Internet

Delhi-based Linq has introduced a free WiFi connect and Internet sharing app to bring free Internet to Delhi and Bengaluru. In a media statement, the company shared that the app already has more than 60% of Delhi WiFi enabled, which means that users will be able to find Free WiFi hotspot within 500 metres of wherever they are.

DevOps Accelerator JFrog Expands India Presence With New Office In Bengaluru

It further aims to support the local customers and community. The team in India is expected to double in size within the next year, as claimed by JFrog in an official statement. JFrog will continue to offer leading solutions for enterprises around the globe and is now looking for its next recruits in India who are passionate about helping companies deliver better software, faster.

Foodpanda Partners With PhonePe

As an introductory offer, users paying through PhonePe can avail a cashback of 50% up to INR 100 on their first order. Through the partnership, the consumers will be able to choose from several payment options such as PhonePe Wallet, UPI (Unified Payment Interface), Credit and Debit cards to pay for their food orders on Foodpanda.

Happy Loans Partners With InstantPay

By integrating with InstantPay, Happy Loans will provide a wide variety of loan products to the merchants. Through this partnership, Happy Loans will add over 25000 customers of InstantPay into their network, which will help them in expanding their network. InstantPay will cater to their merchants by offering them new products to empower their customers with more business opportunities and have an edge over its competitors.

UberEATS To Soon Launch In Coimbatore, Vizag

With the addition of these two cities, UberEats will now be available in six cities in the south including Bengaluru, Chennai, Hyderabad and Kochi. Across the two cities, UberEats will be launching with nearly 300 restaurant partners.

Swiggy Looks To Foray Into Hyperlocal Segment

Swiggy is looking to foray into the hyperlocal vertical, particularly the medicine and grocery categories. The move is geared towards boosting the company’s overall volume. Reportedly dubbed as “Dash”, the hyperlocal service will be launched as a pilot in some categories over the coming months.

Stay tuned for the next edition of News Roundup: Indian Startup News Of The Week!