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News Roundup: 3 Startup Stories You Don’t Want To Miss This Week [12 December – 17 December]

News Roundup: 3 Startup Stories You Don’t Want To Miss This Week [12 December – 17 December]

After months of speculation, Amazon announced the launch of its Prime Video service in India. Prime Video is an additional offering for Amazon’s Prime subscribers, including existing ones and allows users exclusive access to movies, Amazon’s original series as well as premium content from across the globe.

In a separate development, the other US ecommerce giant PayPal has opposed the registration of local player Paytm’s trademark on numerous grounds. As per the filing, the Paytm’s trademark possesses similar colour scheme, which is likely to cause confusion and deception among the consumers.

Paytm, on the other hand, has identified 48 miscreants fraudulent users in the physical goods marketplace businesses who were trying to game the company’s consumer-friendly practices. The company has filed a complaint against users misusing consumer-friendly return and refunds policies.

Important Developments Of The Week

Grofers Introduces Reverse COD

Gurugram-based hyperlocal grocery delivery startup, Grofers has partnered with YES Bank, in a move which will allow Grofers customers to get currency notes delivered to their doorstep along with their grocery order for up to INR 2,000 through YES Bank PoS machines.

Delhi Airport Opens Door To Ecommerce With Shopflydel

The Delhi International Airport Authority Ltd (DIAL), which operates Indira Gandhi International Airport in Delhi, has launched India’s first airport e-shopping platform – Shopflydel. Shopflydel is currently available for domestic passengers. Through this facility, one can book the product(s) of their choice from 30 days up to 12 hours before their flight in three simple steps – Click-Pick-Fly.

Haptik And TLabs Announce Results Of Botathon

Haptik and TLabs have announced the winners of the India’s first ever Botathon hosted on December 10-11, 2016 at the T-Labs Office in Bengaluru. The event saw participation from 42-curated teams with over 100+ participants selected from 500 applicants. The startups who won the competition were Team CStrikers, Brocorp, and SVEN and were awarded INR 60K, INR 30K, and INR 15K respectively.

Other Developments

Pokemon Go Is Finally Here

Five months after its official launch the world over, games company Niantic has partnered with Reliance Jio and finally launched wildly popular Pokemon Go on the Apple App Store and Google Play in India. Niantic, Inc. is a San Francisco-based software development company that developed and published the augmented reality mobile game Pokémon Go.

Microsoft Launches 3 Cloud-based IoT Solutions

Powered by Azure, the Microsoft cloud, the three solutions offered by Precimetrix, Teramatrix and Covacsis are helping create digital, intelligent and predictive factories. These solutions have been deployed in leading organisations like Hero Moto Corp, Samudra LED, KEC, VE Commercial Vehicles, Godrej, TAFE, Bajaj among others.

Lendingkart Group Expands To Over 450 Cities

An online platform that facilitates SMEs in obtaining working capital loans, Lendingkart Group NBFC has expanded its reach to 462 cities across the country. Disbursing over 6,500 loans in small towns and cities across India, Lendingkart Group NBFC has covered 27 states in the country and is truly driving financial inclusion for thousands of people in the SME space. With over 100 channel partners supporting Lendingkart Finance’s effort, the endeavour is to reach out to 10,000 businesses in the SME space in next 6 months.

MobME Plans To Expand Operations To Other Regions

MobME Wireless, India’s first telecom campus startup, completes a decade of its launch this month, amid plans to ramp up its operations in South Asia, the Middle East, Africa, and the US. It has now expanded its range of technology to cater to needs of clients in ecommerce, airlines, BFSI and retail sectors, through its core verticals. In order to expand its product portfolio, the company has also decided to consider inorganic growth opportunities such as acquisitions or similar transactions.

Eros Now Partners With Paytm

Eros International PLC has announced a strategic partnership of Eros Now, its digital over-the-top (OTT) platform with Paytm. This will enable Eros Now subscribers to make easy and hassle free payments using the e-wallet service. The size of mobile money transactions is expected to reach $780 Bn by 2017 globally, and more than 85% of point-of-sale (POS) systems are expected to accept contactless payments by 2016.

News Corp VCCircle To Launch Digital Media Platform ‘InfraCircle’

News Corp VCCircle has announced its foray into covering India’s growing infrastructure space with the launch of InfraCircle. This will be India’s first digital media platform dedicated to the country’s infrastructure space and a one-stop platform for infrastructure and policy related developments, catering to sub-segments such as infrastructure finance, transportation, communications, power, resources and urban development among others. The subscribers of InfraCircle will be able to access news as it breaks, accompanied by analysis, opinion pieces, and smart infographics on the go.

Paytm Partners With NHAI

Paytm has announced its partnership with major NHAI toll concessionaires like Reliance Infra, Sadhbav, IRB, MEP, L&T and GMR to enable cashless payments at all state, national and city tolls across India. With this partnership, commuters across the country can now pay their toll charges instantly with Paytm. Commuters can simply scan the QR code placed at the toll payment counters using the Paytm app and pay their toll charge instantly.

Capital Float Partners With Via.com

Capital Float, the digital lending platform to SMEs in India, announced its partnership with omnichannel travel, retail & fintech company Via.com to unveil the “VIA Loan Mela”. This loan festival targeted 5,000 travel agents across India, will provide them access to working capital finance across 5 cities in the country. This initiative aims at driving the adoption of Capital Float’s unique collateral free product Pay Later, which will provide agents, the necessary working capital support needed to scale up their operations and reach new customers.

FreeCharge Ties Up With Ridlr

FreeCharge, a digital payments platform, has announced its partnership with Ridlr, the official mobile ticketing partners of BEST. Using the services of FreeCharge and Ridlr, BEST commuters can now pay for their bus tickets and monthly passes digitally, saving them the hassle of finding change every day and waiting in queues at bus depots for renewal of passes. BEST is the first public intra-city bus agency to go fully digital in India, creating a system for less cash dependency and better cash management.

Fynd Launches ‘Fynd Store’

Fynd, the fashion ecommerce platform has launched a new product ‘Fynd Store.’ ‘Fynd Store’ will enhance the customer’s’ shopping experiences, by leveraging the appeal – including touch, feel and trial aspects of a physical store, supported by the organisation and logistical convenience of a digital platform. In other words, the product enables brands to capture the maximum number of sales and build sustainable loyalty and benefit from cross-selling opportunities.

Selfdrive.in Forays Into UAE

SelfDrive.in, a self-drive rental car has announced its foray into the UAE, making it the first Indian Self-drive car rental company to kick-start international operations. Pinewood Service Corporation, the holding company of Self-drive.in has acquired the license to start operations there and in the first phase of the launch will roll out 1,500 vehicles in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, Ajman, Ras-Al-Khaima. All the locations will go live with operations in one go from January 2018. The second phase of the launch will witness a roll out of another 1,500 cars (in Q3 2017-18) in the neighbouring countries in the Middle East covering the major GCC regions.

ah! Ventures Launches “The Marketplace”

Considering the challenges associated while starting a company, ah! Ventures has created a marketplace that will provide startups with all kind of services right from creating a brand identity to hiring right kind of talent. The ah! Marketplace will help connect the startups to find relevant service providers at every step of their entrepreneurial journey.  The platform works on a model wherein accredited service providers from various realms like technology, legal advisory, design, content, finance, HR, etc offer their services to the enterprises looking for those.

Haptik Introduces New Version

Conversational commerce platform Haptik has launched version 5.0 of the app, which represents the culmination of learnings from over 2 Mn users and is almost a relaunch that the company has been working on for close to 6 months. One of the key new features of Haptik 5.0 is the inbuilt SmartWallet that would allow users to complete commercial transactions with a single tap without having to leave the chat interface. The new version also features an expanded partner ecosystem of over 25 category-leading brands across segments to include Uber, Zomato, BookMyShow, Goibibo, Cleartrip and UrbanClap among others.

Moglix Launches GST Technology

The global marketplace for business and industrial supplies, Moglix has launched its ‘GST technology‘ for the manufacturing sector. The company claims that the technology will empower both SMEs and large suppliers to file indirect taxes seamlessly while maintaining a close vigil on the 100% reconcilability of the entire value chain.

Author

Meha Agarwal

Inc42 Staff

Meha has engineering and MBA degrees, but she has always been a writer at heart. It was the perfect combination of utilising her research and analytical skills and her enthusiasm for writing that sparked her interest in writing about the Indian startup ecosystem – the latest tech and gadgets and the startups that create them. She is always on the lookout for industry-specific stories in niche areas of interest such as ecommerce, fintech, greentech and more.

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