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News Roundup: 11 Indian Startup News Stories That You Don’t Want To Miss This Week [13-18 August 2018]

News Roundup: 11 Indian Startup News Stories That You Don’t Want To Miss This Week [13-18 August 2018]

• Patanjali made social media platforms such as Google, Facebook, and Youtube take down defamatory content
• Infibeam has registered a 26% increase in revenues, thereby earning $13 Mn in Q1 FY 2019
• MakeMyTrip posted a net revenue of $137.4 Mn for the first fiscal quarter ending June 30, 2018

This week, in one of the most important development FMCG brand Patanjali made social media platforms take down defamatory content. The accused social media platforms include Google, Facebook, and Youtube. Delhi High Court has asked these platforms to take down the alleged defamatory content related to Baba Ramdev’s billion-dollar ayurvedic company- Patanjali Ayurved Ltd.

Patanjali had earlier filed a complaint saying it found certain videos on these platforms to be slanderous. The contentious content is alleged to have been posted by an ex-employee of Divya Pharmacy, which is a unit of Patanjali.

In another development, Patanjali has announced the revival of its swadeshi chatting medium, Kimbho app, a, which may be launched with new features on August 27. The app was earlier launched on May 30 and was pulled down on June 1 due to some technical glitches.

Never Give Up: Patanjali May Launch Kimbho Again On August 27
Image Credit: The Indian Express

Important Indian Startup News Stories of The Week

Q1 FY 2019 Goes Well For Infibeam And MakeMyTrip

Ahmedabad-based ecommerce firm Infibeam has registered a 26% increase in revenues, thereby earning $13 Mn in Q1 FY 2019 against $10.3 Mn in Q1 FY 2018. The company has also recorded a net loss of $1.97 Mn for Q1 FY 2019 ending on June 30, 2018. In another development, Gurugram-based online travel company MakeMyTrip posted a net revenue of $137.4 Mn for the first fiscal quarter ending June 30, 2018. The company has recorded a net loss of $51 Mn for Q1 2018-19, which is a reduction of almost 25% from the $68.4 Mn for Q1 FY 2017-18

Facebook Messenger In India May Have A Payments Feature

Facebook plans to offer mobile recharges and top-ups as an extension of its Marketplace feature and has partnered with a number of companies, including telcos, to provide services to users. Facebook payments is currently available to users in countries such as the US, UK, and France. The app enables free friend-to-friend payments feature.

Flipkart Launches Flipkart Plus, Completes One Year With Perfect Buy Store And More

  • Flipkart has finally launched its customer loyalty programme Flipkart Plus, which was supposed to be launched on August 15, around the Independence Day. Flipkart Plus, is a no-fee membership programme and enables all Flipkart customers to earn ‘Plus Coins’ with each order, which can later be redeemed to avail of benefits across shopping, travel, and content on the platform.
  • Flipkart has also completed the first anniversary of Perfect Buy Store and has added new features to it.
  • Flipkart is looking to cut its commission on low-priced categories and as shared a rate card with sellers. It said that the rates would be effective from August 17. The new rates will be applied to smaller average selling price (ASP) items such as laptop bags and mobile holders. The commission rates have been changed on certain items such as for laptop bags, it has been reduced from 13% to 4%.

Flipkart Hires Five Senior Executives For Vice President Posts

Amazon To Set Up Local Data Servers Immediately

The Indian government has told Amazon to urgently begin working on setting up local data servers in India. Amazon has been asked to check unbridled cross-border migration of data without the consent of users, thereby increasing its operating costs in the country.

Ecommerce Policy Must Ensure Consumer Protection: Niti Aayog CEO

Niti Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant said that India needs a progressive and forward-looking ecommerce policy which will promote startups, investment, and growth, and create new jobs, and not one which will impact its current momentum. He also said that the ecommerce has the potential to generate a vast number of new jobs in the economy.

UPI 2.0 Gets Launched In Mumbai By The NPCI

The updated version of Unified Payments Interface (UPI) was launched on August 16 by the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI). The updated version of UPI has certain features such as overdraft facility, one time mandate, invoice in the box, and signed intent & QR.

Paytm Mall Aims To Achieve $10 Bn By 2019

Paytm Ecommerce-backed Paytm Mall is aiming for a three-fold rise in annualised gross sales. Paytm Ecommerce has achieved $3.5 Bn in annualised gross sales in June 2018. Further, by 2019, Paytm Mall expects unit orders to jump to 1-1.5 Mn per day from about 625 K currently.

COAI Opposes Social Media Blocking

Cellular Operators Associations of India (COAI) has told the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) that any move to block social media apps like Facebook, Whatsapp, Telegram, and Instagram would amount to curtailing of freedom of speech. It further said that the blocking of any application which has billions if users across the world would halt all day-to-day communications, correspondence, and commerce activities.

Commerce Ministry Aims To Utilise Ecomm Policy For WTO Negotiations

The Commerce Department has asserted that India requires a domestic ecommerce policy as there is pressure from developed countries on it to take part in WTO negotiations on online trade and also to counter China’s domination in the digital space. A ministry official has also said that such a policy was needed by India to safeguard its interests.

Other Indian Startup Stories Of The Week

OYO’S ESOP Plan 2018 To Focus On Employees In India

‘ESOP Plan 2018’ is a new aims to add more benefits for motivating employees to continuously create value for OYO. It currently has 4,600 employees working at OYO’s hotel chain across 160 cities in India both in corporate and on-ground.

Payments Banks Have Reached RBI Against Wallet Interoperability

By permitting interoperability, the UPI handle and debit cards, non-bank PPIs will become quasi-banks in terms of payments. They will have a regulatory arbitrage over payment banks, considering the significantly less capital and other regulatory requirements they have to comply with.

PolicyBazaar To Associate With China’s Ping An Doctor

Ping An Insurance Group, owns Ping An Good Doctor which is backed by SoftBank and connects patients with doctors. It claims to have over 190 Mn users and over 30 Mn monthly active users. The development comes with the aim of strengthening DocPrime, which is a new healthcare business started by PolicyBazaar a few months ago.

Xiaomi To Launch POCO

A sub-brand, POCO, with an aim to boost profitability, will be launched in the premium segment in India as well as globally. Jai Mani has been appointed as the lead product manager for POCO. The new brand will be backed by supply chain, operations, and service of infrastructure of Xiaomi.

PhonePe Partners With IRCTC

Users can now use PhonePe on the IRCTC Rail connect android application. PhonePe’s 100 Mn plus users will be able to pay directly from their bank accounts using UPI, credit, and debit cards, and also the PhonePe wallet for travel bookings

 Three New Exchange Partners Introduced By xRapid

 These include Bittrex, Bitso, and Bittrex will act as the preferred digital asset exchange for xRapid, whereas Bitso and will be preferred for Mexican Pesos and Philippine Pesos respectively.

Woo Allows Women To Browse In Incognito Mode

In this new feature, women will see men, and only the men they’ve liked will be able to see them back. This will allow women users, who have specific and strong need for privacy, to explore dating at their own pace.

WaveMaker Launches HyScale

HyScale is a continuous delivery automation platform that accelerates container adoption for large deployments in regulated industries such as BFSI, healthcare, and telecom. HyScale is a part of the WaveMaker modernisation suite for enterprises. It abstracts underlying complexity with Docker and Kubernetes, allowing DevOps teams to focus on what matters most – the application and its services.

Doctor Insta Adds New Feature

The new feature will allow patients to order medicines from the app and get it delivered at their doorstep. It has partnered with leading online pharmacies such as Netmeds, 1mg, Pharmeasy, among others and has also tied up with offline pharmacy chain Apollo Pharmacy.

Stay tuned for the next week edition of News Roundup: Indian Startup News Stories Of The Week.