Walmart Labs has acquihired a Bengaluru-based deeptech startup, Dataturks, in a bid to use latter’s machine learning (ML) capabilities in various projects for the digital arm of the US-based retail major Walmart Stores.
The five-member team of Dataturks have already joined Walmart Labs and are now part of Walmart Lab’s merchant technology division. Acqui-hiring refers to the practice of buying a company in a cut-price deal, primarily for the purpose of “hiring” the company’s founders and key employees.
Dataturks was founded in 2018 by ex-Flipsters, Mohan Gupta and Gajendra Dadheech. It had about 35 paying clients mostly in the healthtech, legal sectors in the US. It earlier raised a seed-stage fund from the Summer 2018 accelerator cohort of Axilor.
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“We were providing a software-as-a-service (Saas) for the machine learning team of various companies, helpful to speed-up their learning loops than the traditional methods. We would now be accelerating machine learning use case for Walmart Labs,” Gupta told Inc42.
It is learnt from Gupta that the discussion regarding the acquihire of Deepturks was going on for the last one-and-a-half month.
“Walmart has a lot of ML-driven projects and has been doing a lot of interesting work out of India. We still have that vision to make ML use cases for people and with Walmart, we can do it much faster,” Gupta said.
Walmart Strengthening Its Tech Team With Tech Acquihiring
Walmart, after investing $16 Bn to acquire Flipkart, has been aggressively expanding its engineering team with tech acquiring. The company is set to hire 1K people in India, mainly in the areas of machine learning, merchandise, supply chain, data science, product managers and cloud experts.
Last year, Walmart Labs acquihired two Indian startups, Int.Ai and Appsfly. While ML-driven startup, Int.AI, works on analysing data and shares it with targeted users over email as well as team messenger, Appsfly is a micro-app maker.
Walmart Labs has one of its three global offices in Bengaluru, started in November 2011, where 90% of its work for India is executed. The office has a competitive intelligence and analytics team to push its innovation and retail technology.