We bring you the latest edition of News roundup for the week!
In one of the biggest news this week, the new draft ecommerce policy may be introduced in the next few weeks. It will have a provision for a sector regulator and would help boost the sector, promote exports and ensure fair play.
Here’s a look at the other important developments for the week.
Important Indian Startup News Stories Of The Week
FSSAI Nabs Food Ecommerce Companies
Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) issued revised guidelines to step up scrutiny of ecommerce food companies saying that there can be no compromise on last-mile delivery and safety of food products. The new guidelines note that the food products offered for sale are liable to sampling at any point in the supply chain.
Self Censorship To Stream For OTT Players
This self-censorship code would stop players from showing content that’s banned by Indian courts, disrespect the national emblem and flag, outrages religious sentiments, promotes terrorism or violence against state and shows children in sexual acts. The self-censorship code will most likely adopt a redressal mechanism that will allow viewers to send complaints if they judge the over-the-top (OTT) services to have violated it. This may evolve into an adjudicatory body to resolve customer complaints.
Changes In FDI Rules Cause Mayhem For Ecommerce Industry
The commerce and industry ministry notified changes in foreign direct investment rules for the ecommerce sector prohibiting ecommerce marketplaces from selling products on its platform in which they own a stake. “Ecommerce marketplace entity will not mandate any seller to sell any product exclusively on its platform only,” the latest circular said. It will come into effect from February 1, 2019.
Amazon, Flipkart Offer New Incentives To Disgruntled Sellers
In an email by Flipkart to its online sellers stating that it was slashing commissions in the range of 1-6%. This is reportedly being followed by Amazon too. Both Flipkart and Amazon are now also looking to offer several other incentives to their online vendors to help them meet their targets and loyalty bonuses.
Financial Performances For FY18
- Zinka Logistics Solutions Pvt Ltd-owned online marketplace for logistics, BlackBuck reported a 59% jump in its revenue to $128.3 Mn (INR 902 Cr) in FY18 with a loss of $16.6 Mn (INR 116.7 Cr), up 35% in the year. Meanwhile, the company’s expenses reached $144.8 Mn (INR 1,018 Cr) for FY18, a 56% jump as against $92.98 Mn (INR 653.6 Cr) in the previous year.
- Gurugram-based ecommerce logistics company Delhivery reported a jump of 42% in its revenue for the fiscal year 2018. At the same time, the company’s net loss also increased by 8.45% reaching $98.7 Mn (INR 692 Cr) in the year ending March 31, 2018, as compared to $91 Mn (INR 637.8 Cr) in the year before.
- The Indian subsidiary of Netherlands-based PayU, the payments arm of tech investor Naspers, PayU India, recorded a jump of 92% in revenue for the period ending March 2018, reaching $84.8 Mn (INR 588 Cr) from $44.35 Mn (INR 311 Cr) the year before.
- Facebook’s India unit has posted a profit of $8.11 Mn (INR 57 Cr) in the year ended March 2018, a jump of 40% from the year before. The company’s annual spending on legal and advertising has reportedly doubled this year. For 2017-18, Facebook India’s advertising and promotional spend went up by as much as 122% to $13.37 Mn (INR 94 Cr) while its legal department saw costs rising by 85% to $11.1 Mn (INR 78 Cr).
- Vector E-commerce, an online seller that used to supply most of the products sold by Flipkart-owned fashion ecommerce portal Myntra, has recorded a 90% fall in revenue to $11.5 Mn (INR 81 Cr) for the year ended in March 2018 from $173.1 Mn (INR 1,216 Cr) in 2017.
MakeMyTrip’s Deep Kalra Says Hotels Lobby Can’t Determine Commercial Deals
MakeMyTrip (MMT) group chief executive Deep Kalra said the Federation of Hotel and Restaurant Association of India (FHRAI) has no locus standi to determine commercial agreements between MMT and the establishments on its platform. He also said that he had received more than 10K supporting emails from hotels that are on both MakeMyTrip and Goibibo platforms as well as from city chapters, stating that they have no pending issues.
Chidambaram Meets Startups To Get Inputs For Congress’ Manifesto
A total of 25 startups including those from alternative energy and Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises (MSME sectors) participated in the meeting. The entrepreneurs have requested for proper credit flow and subsidies from banks, along with technology collaborations to help develop new startups.
Indian Subsidiaries Of Global Tech Companies To Submit Financial Data By March
The information will have to be submitted to the tax authorities in line with the multilateral Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). The move has been made to ensure that the companies pay the required taxes to the government. In line with the ruling, the companies will have to submit a Country-by-Country (CbC) Report where they will have to state their annual financial details for all tax jurisdiction where they do business. Earlier, the deadline was December 31, but it was then extended to March.
Govt Seeks Public Views On Social Media Regulations
The proposed rules are aimed at increasing traceability of social media activity in a bid to curb the spread of fake news. Opening the debate on public forums, the government asserted that instances of misuse of social media by criminals and anti-national elements have brought new challenges to the law enforcement agencies. Social networks such as Facebook, WhatsApp and Twitter must ensure that their platforms are not used to commit and provoke terrorism, extremism, violence and crime, MeitY said.
Govt Plans New App To Share Infrastructure Developments With Public
The Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs is planning to offer data access to the citizens for all its flagship projects. Some of the urban renewal projects such as Smart Cities, Housing for All, AMRUT, Swachh Bharat and National Heritage City Development and Augmentation Yojana (HRIDAY) will be geotagged.
SEBI To Release Startup Listing Guidelines By January 20
As many as 15 tech startups are reportedly planning to go public after the Securities and Exchange Bureau of India (SEBI) relaxed its norms for startup listing on the Indian stock exchanges including BSE and NSE. These startups have reportedly sought guidance from global non-profit organisation The IndUS Entrepreneurs (TiE), Mumbai chapter to help them complete the process.
Other Indian Startup News Stories Of The Week
Mobycy Starts Escooter Service In Gurugram
The scooter which can be used for short commutes can be unlocked via smartphones using QR codes. Mobycy will be conducting the pilot in Huda City Centre, Gurugram with around 300 scooters. It is planning to have about 5,000 vehicles by March 2019. The service will cost $0.01 (INR 1) per minute during the travel.
Baxi Turns To Hyperlocal Delivery Space With ‘B-Fresh’
Gurugram-based 74 BC Technologies, the parent company of Baxi has shifted its business to the hyper-local delivery model and has tied up with two FMCG brands. It has also rebranded itself as B-Fresh. The company, with redesigned user interface, has also partnered with Patanjali Industries and Mother Dairy.
Staqu Launches TRINETRA For UP Police
Connecting the data from the SCRB, DCRB, Prison and other local sources, TRINETRA removes any scope for data duplication or ambiguity via fake names or IDs. TRINETRA equips police forces to carry superior technology in their pockets. With this application, police personnel can easily register or se arch for criminals via simple biometric features, such as images or videos.
Zomato Launches Zomaland, Experiential Carnival
Zomaland will bring together some of the top chefs and eateries from across the country, a line-up of music artists and DJs, and interactive installations. It will also feature a vintage funfair with carnival games and fascinating photo booths, vibrant food parades, enthralling street performances and a dedicated zone for the children.
Lybrate Launches Social Networking Platform For Doctors, GoodMD
GoodMD, an exclusive social networking platform for doctors, where they can destress themselves in the midst of their busy and tiresome lives, as also voice their opinions on multitude of issues related to healthcare, including regulatory and administrative, without the inhibition of being judged.
ConfirmTkt Launches Hindi App
Bengaluru-based online train ticket discovery and booking engine ConfirmTkt has already seen about 100k downloads in just 30 days for its Hindi app. The platform has witnessed a significant rise of 4.5 % in both engagement and retention levels already, a figure which is likely to go up manifold in the coming months.
Stay tuned for the next week edition of News Roundup: Indian Startup News Stories Of The Week!