Ola accused Uber of being a foreign firm with no regard for Indian laws and doing business in India only for profit, after Ola was issued a license under the new regulations set up by Karnataka Govt. Whereas, on not receiving the license, Uber filed a petition challenging the Karnataka on-demand Transportation Technology Rules, 2016, including ban on surge pricing and cap on fares—calling these unconstitutional.
Later, Pranay Jivrajka, Chief Operating Officer at Ola, came out with a blogpost in response to this debate around organisations operating in the country being national or international.
With this, Ola also signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Haryana Govt to create over 10,000 entrepreneurs in the state. As part of the MoU, Ola will invest INR 350 Cr over the next five years to skill and train thousands of men and women and help them take their first step towards entrepreneurship.
Paytm To Offer Same Day Delivery; Enters Cross Border Commerce
Paytm announced to offer same day delivery of products in 20 cities. It has begun with the deliveries with local-based commerce and will further add more categories to it.
Also, by leveraging its largest stakeholder, Alibaba’s platform, Paytm has stepped into cross-border commerce. It will now help sellers on its platform source more than 5 Mn products from China at a much cheaper rate.
The company also entered into a strategic partnership with Suzuki Motorcycle in order to provide assortment of bike and scooter models across all transactional platforms in India. With over 400+ Suzuki dealers on-boarded, Paytm’s marketplace will now enable booking of all Suzuki two-wheeler models on its platform PAN India.
Payoneer Re-Enters Indian Market
Payoneer, the New York-based cross-border payments platform, re-entered the Indian market with its local bank transfer services. The company is initially targeting Mumbai and Bangalore, and will be opening its Indian office in one of these locations.
CitrusPay Launches ‘Sellfie’
Online payment gateway CitrusPay launched a contextual commerce platform Sellfie. Sellfie will enable individuals and small businesses to sell and collect payments on social networks and instant messengers using buy buttons, payment links and chat bots.
Lazylad Is Pivoting & Not Shutting Down
Lazylad quashed the reports of shutting down its operations and said that they are just pivoting their business model from B2C to B2B. The startup currently has 400 partnered stores on its B2B marketplace.
Virat Kohli Launches New Startup
Virat Kohli started a fitness venture, Stepathlon Kids, in a joint venture with Stepathlon Lifestyle, a global wellness company. It aims to deal with fitness issues affecting kids by taking them through a 30-day pedometer-based virtual race that will help increase awareness on health issues.
NASSCOM 10000 Startups Forms Alliance With IvyCamp
NASSCOM 10000 StartUps, along with IvyCamp, has announced a strategic alliance to bring startups, investors, mentors, and industry bodies on a single platform. The alliance aims to look at developing strategies and initiatives to bolster the IOT movement in Indian startup ecosystem.
Knowlarity’s Services Shut Down In Delhi By A Telco
Cloud Telephony startup Knowlarity’s services were shut down in Delhi by the Telecommunication Department, without notice. The department had instructed the Telco to shut down the services to Knowlarity on the basis that the AudioTex license written in 1995 does not allow call forwarding.
CarDekho.Com Launches BatteryDekho.Com
Auto portal CarDekho.com has launched automobile battery research and discovery portal BatteryDekho.com. With this, CarDekho aims at building a comprehensive ecosystem for vehicle ownership and making the battery discovery, research and selection process conveniently for the Indian consumer.
Flipkart Gears Up To Counter Offline Retail Biggies
Flipkart chairman Sachin Bansal is planning to bring together ecommerce companies to create a lobby group to counter brick-and-mortar retailers. Offline retailers like Aditya Birla Group and the Future Group, are seen to be influencing government policies through organisations like the Retailers Association of India (RAI).
Indian Govt. Relaxes Deposit Norms For Startups
Indian government has taken yet another step to boost startup ecosystem of the country. Any advance of more than INR 25 lakh to a startup from-alternate investment fund, domestic venture capital funds as well as mutual funds registered with SEBI-has now been exempted from being treated as deposit.
Other Developments Of The Week
Xiaomi India and MobiKwik Launch 1-Touch Payments With MIUI8
Xiaomi and MobiKwik announced one-touch recharge and bill payments. Launched with Xiaomi MIUI8, the feature allows users to pay bills and recharge their phones or DTH connections from within the messaging application.
Curofy forays into Medical Students and Veterinary Doctors segment
In an attempt to diversify the user base, Curofy is rolling out a student initiative as an invite only programme to maintain stringency on the verification process, and ensure a premium standard for the community. Curofy also plans to build a community of veterinary practitioners on its platform.
“OYO for Business” Now Live On App
OYO announced the availability of its self-serve platform for business travellers on its mobile app called “OYO for Business”. The platform offers rooms to cater to the needs of corporate travellers. The rooms are present in over 6000 hotels spread across 180 cities in India.
CleverTap Introduces Live User Segments
CleverTap, a mobile analytics and engagement, announced Live User Segments, a new capability for evaluating a user’s behavior as it happens in an app. Live User Segments run continuously and act like a real-time filter on a user’s behavior. App developers and marketers use Live User Segments to do real-time monitoring and analysis of critical user flows such as onboarding and conversions.
Lovecycles Renamed As Maya
LoveCycles, women’s health tracker, has unveiled its new name – Maya, along with a renewed icon. Along with the name, the icon – earlier known as Dola, has also been given a new look and will now be known as Maya. The brand, however, retains the old logo.
PayPal Launches Seller Protection For Online Services In India
PayPal announced the launch of seller protection for intangibles, an expansion of its existing seller protection program, that earlier only covered merchants selling tangible goods such as handicrafts, fashion, art, etc.
Jugnoo Introduces Hands-Free Booking Experience
Jugnoo integrated with iPhone’s voice assistant Siri, making auto booking easier than ever before. It updated its iOS app to allow users to book an auto by saying “Hey Siri, book an auto with Jugnoo app”. This is an attempt to reinstate amongst all Jugnoo iOS users that booking a ride is not a dull process.
Shopclues Hits Benchmark
ShopClues now has half a million sellers on its platform. The increased number of merchants has significantly boosted the total available products and unstructured offerings from various regions of the country on ShopClues. The company expects 1 Mn sellers to be available on the platform by December 2016.
Akshaya Patra Foundation Launches Mobile App
Akshaya Patra Foundation that runs world’s largest mid-day meal programme and caters to 1.4 Mn children across 24 locations and 10 states pan India has recently launched their Mobile app to ease the process of donations towards their foundation and provide transparency to its functioning.
AHA Taxis Announces Major Expansion In India
AHA Taxis announced the launch of its service in over 20+ locations in India. The expansion is in line with the company’s plans to broaden the network of cities where it offers its service.
GreyOrange To Ramp Up Global Operations
Robotics firm GreyOrange is looking at strengthening its international presence and hopes to ramp up non-India operations to contribute about 70% of its revenues, up from the present 30%. The startup manufactures and deploys advanced robotic systems, primarily used for automation at warehouses and distribution and fulfilment centres.
Flipkart Looks To License Own Brands
Flipkart plans to license its private-label brands to sellers whom it deems capable of fulfilling its quality manufacturing benchmarks and product specifications. It is also preparing to launch its in-house brands in jewellery, mobile and fashion accessories and other categories.
AllSuperMart Ties Up With Roadrunnr & Grab
To meet the scaled up local requirements and to ensure timely deliveries within the city, hyperlocal marketplace AllSuperMart tied up with Roadrunnr and Grab to strengthen its presence in Pune.
Tata CLiQ Signs Up 12 Global Brands
Tata group’s ecommerce venture TataCLiQ.com has partnered with 12 international brands, including New Look, Oasis, Lipsy London, Phase Eight, Hawes & Curtis, to sell on its platform. These brands will offer exclusive range of products that will be made available on TataCLiQ.com.
Housejoy Rejigs Laundry Service Operations
Online home services provider Housejoy is reported to have stopped its laundry services temporarily in most areas of Bangalore and Delhi-NCR. It has taken the move in order to minimize cost in an environment where startups face pressure from investors to reduce cash burn and improve profitability.
Zimply Shuts Shop
Home décor and interior designing products Zimply has shut down its operations. The website and app of the startup are also no longer accessible. The company went through multiple pivots before finally pulling the plug.