We bring to you the latest edition of News Roundup: Indian Startup Stories Of The Week!
A study revealed that digital payments in India is expected to double to $135.2 Bn in 2023 from $64.8 Bn this year. India is expected to clock the fastest growth in digital payments’ transaction value between 2019 and 2023 with a compounded annual growth of 20.2%. In other news, the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) gave banks a target of processing 30 Bn digital transactions. The results are now out as the MeitY shared that Airtel Payments Bank and FINO Payments Bank have led the target with over 200% achievement of their targets.
The fifth meeting of NITI Aayog’s Governing Council took place in New Delhi on Saturday, (June 15) and ahead of the Union Budget, it was a key milestone for the new government. Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed the meeting and said that the goal of making India a $5-Tn economy by 2024 was “challenging, but achievable” with help from state governments.
For financial year 2018-19, the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) gave banks a target of processing 30 Bn digital transactions. The results are now out as the MeitY shared that Airtel Payments Bank and FINO Payments Bank have led the target with over 200% achievement of their targets.
Important Indian Startup News Stories Of The Week
Govt Executives Vs Tech Companies Debate On Over Data Protection
Piyush Goyal along with MeitY, DPIIT and RBI officials held discussions with tech and ecommerce players on Monday (June 17). The agenda of the meeting was to understand the concerns of these companies and take their suggestions towards building a robust data protection framework. This will help them achieve the dual purpose of privacy and innovation.
RBI (Reserve Bank of India) will examine issues of the companies related to data localisation, said Piyush Goyal, on Tuesday. The statement was issued after a meeting with tech and ecommerce industry representatives over concerns on the data localisation norms proposed by the government.
SpaceTech Is The New Buzz
Addressing the joint sitting of both parliamentary houses yesterday (June 20), India President Ram Nath Kovind said that the government has set a goal of having 50K startups operating in India by 2024. To realise this goal, the India president also shared a slew of objectives including the introduction of a new facility for entrepreneurs to avail loans up to INR 50 Lakh without any guarantee, expansion of the existing Pradhan Mantri Mudra Yojna to cover 30 Cr Indians, and the promise of generating new employment opportunities.
At the same time, a NASA-funded a programme in the US has produced a series of informational videos about famous archaeological sites and institutions in India. The programme has lesson plans in Hindi aimed at teaching the language internationally in context with science and technology. A PTI report stated that the videos in the NASA programme focus on scientific innovations at places like Amer Fort and Hawa Mahal in Jaipur, UNESCO heritage site Qutub Minar, and the rust-resilient iron pillars of Delhi.
What Flipkart Is Up To?
In an effort to open up financial inclusion opportunities and promote independence for micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSME), ecommerce major Flipkart has decided to revamp its ‘Growth Capital’ seller financing program. According to a report, the new changes will allow over one lakh sellers on the platform to avail credit at competitive interest rates from non-banking financial companies (NBFC) and banks. The approval time for the whole process will be one day and sellers will be credited with the money within 48 hours.
Mumbai-based fitness and wearable device maker GOQii and ecommerce platform Flipkart announced a resolution to their dispute less than a month after the former issued a legal notice to the Walmart-owned company for deep discounting its products. In a joint statement on Friday, the companies said the dispute had been resolved and GOQii health devices would again be available on Flipkart while details around how the settlement was reached not being disclosed.
WhatsApp Pay Looking For Ways Of India Entry
Speaking at the live pitch day of Startup India-WhatsApp Grand Challenge, WhatsApp India head Abhijit Bose said that the social messaging company’s focus is to expand digital and financial inclusion, to help businesses across India. He also noted that businesses communication needs to happen where their customers are interacting and that’s where WhatsApp Business can make a difference. The company also hopes to soon enable businesses to transact on WhatsApp as well.
WhatsApp’s troubles in India keep mounting. The Indian government has reportedly asked the Facebook-owned messaging application to digitally fingerprint messages sent on its platform without breaking the encryption. The move is said to ensure traceability of all content shared through the WhatsApp platform, without reading the message.
Chinese Apps And Foreign Companies Now In Trouble
An ET report citing officials said that the parcels seized are of Shein’s India unit, Sino India Etail Pvt. Ltd and Club Factory’s India unit, Globemax Commerce India. The seizure order showed that a Shein warehouse has been sealed in Mumbai after official found it undervaluing and wrongly declaring goods.
The investigation wing of the Competition Commission of India (CCI) is investigating Google and has asked for details of the agreement between smartphone makers and Alphabet’s Google. This comes in light of the antitrust regulator’s probe into the alleged misuse of market share by Android, the world’s leading mobile operating system that is partly developed by Google.
The US has warned the Indian government that companies that are found engaging in trade — supplying equipment or other produce of American origin to Huawei or its unit – could face legal action. According to a report, a letter sent out on May 27 to the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) is being seen as a part of the US effort to pressure India into acting against the Chinese telecom giant, which is also the world’s second largest smartphone vendor.
IndiaMART To Open Its $68Mn IPO
Online marketplace IndiaMART will be opening its initial public offering (IPO) worth $68 Mn (INR 475 Cr) next week between June 24 to June 26. The equity shares are proposed to be listed on both BSE and the National Stock Exchange of India (NSE). The company has planned to offer a total of 4.88 Mn shares at the face value of INR 10 each at a price of INR 970-973 apiece.
Reliance Expanding Its Broadband And Ecommerce
In a move to fuel Reliance Jio’s broadband and ecommerce plays and make way for 5G services in the future, Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) is planning to invest INR 20K Cr in its telecom business. According to a Mint report, Reliance Jio Infocomm will issue 4 Bn non-cumulative optionally convertible preference shares to its parent at INR 50 each for cash.
Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) is planning an initial public offering (IPO) for its Reliance Jio Infocomm subsidiary in the latter half of 2020. According to a report, the first priority would be getting investors for the two infrastructure investment trusts (InvITs) which own the company’s fibre and tower assets.
India May Soon Export Aadhaar
NSDL eGovernance Infrastructure Limited is reportedly looking to take Aadhaar and PAN (Permanent Account Number) services to select Asian and African countries. The move is said to be planned in a joint venture with infrastructure major Sterling and Wilson, the subsidiary of Mumbai-based conglomerate group Shapoorji Pallonji.
Other Indian Startup News Stories Of The Week
Bombay High Court Rules In Favour Of Dream11
Bombay High Court has ruled that the fantasy gaming platform Dream11 is a game of skill and does not involve betting or gambling. The court has also disregarded the allegations of tax evasion against the gaming platform.
The High Court was responding to a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by an independent petitioner, advocate Gurdeep Sachar. The PIL had claimed that the promoters of Dream11 were encouraging gambling and also not paying Goods and Services Tax (GST).
How Ola Battled Uber To Come Out On Top
Speaking at an IIT Bay Area Alumni meet recently, Ola founder and CEO Bhavish Aggarwal revealed that the Bengaluru-based company had to compete fiercely with Uber who was outspending what was then a startup “almost 5:1” or essentially spending 5 times as much as Ola.
Aggarwal said Uber had the upper hand over Ola in terms of funding but that did not prevent the rise of Ola.
OYO Marks US Entry With A Roster Of 50 Hotels
Gurugram-headquartered hospitality unicorn OYO Hotels and Homes has announced its expansion into the United States of America. The company has begun with over 50 OYO hotels in 35 cities across 10 states. This includes Dallas, Houston, Augusta, Atlanta and Miami. OYO claims to have set up a base with over 350 employees working across 15 states to support OYO’s growth in the country.
Paytm Brings Cashbacks To Offline Merchants
Fintech company Paytm has announced that it is shifting its cashback offers from peer-to-peer Unified Payments Interface (UPI) transactions to offline merchant partners for payments at retail kirana stores. The move is aimed at making it more attractive for those customers who still prefer using cash for shopping but are already availing Paytm cashback on individual transactions such as sending money to other users.
Hotstar Leads India’s OTT Market
India’s OTT market is overly dominated by male viewers with men making up for 79% of the total users, a survey done by Counterpoint Research on India’s OTT video market showed. As per the India OTT Video Content Market Survey, Hotstar leads the Indian OTT video content market, followed by Amazon Prime Video, SonyLIV, Netflix, Voot, Zee5, ALTBalaji, and ErosNow in terms of the percentage of respondents subscribed to each platform.
SoftBank Vision Fund To Grow 33x In 20 Years
Masayoshi Son, CEO of Japanese conglomerate SoftBank, projected that the firm’s portfolio could potentially grow 33-times to reach a $1.8 Tn (200 Tn JPY) valuation in the next two decades. Speaking at SoftBank Group’s 39th annual general meeting of shareholders yesterday in Tokyo, Son noted that the SoftBank Group’s earnings before interest and taxes (EBITDA) has crossed over $18.5 Bn (2 Tn JPY) in FY18.
AirBnb Looks To Double Its Marketing Investment In India
Airbnb is looking to double its marketing investment in India to increase its visibility in Indian market. The development, as ANI reports, comes at a time when Singapore, where Airbnb’s Asia-Pacific (APAC) headquarters is based, decided to keep existing restrictions on short-term rentals.
Video Reviews Are The Go-To Choice For Indian Buyers
Google’s A Year In Search Report has shown that India’s video viewership is exploding across content verticals including automobile, financial services, science, and hobby videos among others. It estimated that India will have about 500 Mn online video users by 2020.
Google Updates Its Neighbourly App
Google announced new updates to its Neighbourly app in an official blog posttoday. The app connects local communities to help them learn and share about nearby events. It is open to cities across India and is a platform for neighbours to ask and answer questions. The latest update lets users post photos in the community, create events and polls, and share tips with each other.
Mumbai Leading Logistics Demand In India
The logistics sector in India is experiencing structural shifts through ecommerce and automation which is continually blurring the lines between the retail sector and ecommerce marketplaces and leading to a transformation in supply chains as well as a rise in investments.
In a new report, US-based commercial real estate services and investment firm, CBRE said the overall absorption in the logistics sector in 2018 touched 24 Mn sq ft with the majority of the demand concentrated in Mumbai (23%), Delhi-NCR and Bengaluru (19%), followed by Chennai and Hyderabad accounting for about 14% and 12% respectively.
Stay tuned for the next week edition of Indian Startup News Stories Of The Week!