All stories by Deepsekhar Choudhury
Google toughens privacy compliance, disclosures for app developersRediff.com27 Apr 2022
Tech giant Alphabet on Monday launched a privacy feature on its app marketplace Google Play Store that will require developers to give people more information about how apps collect, share and secure users' data. Users will start seeing the data safety section in Google Play on Tuesday, and developers are required to complete this section for their apps by July 20. As app developers update their functionality or change their data handling practices, they will show the latest in the apps' data safety section.
Zomato puts on hold policy banning eateries over consumer complaintsRediff.com16 Apr 2022
Zomato said late on Friday that it was pushing the implementation of the new food quality policy to May 3 from April 18.
WhatsApp bets big on payments biz in India, plans big investmentsRediff.com15 Apr 2022
A day after getting permission to raise its Unified Payments Interface (UPI) user base to 100 million, WhatsApp on Thursday said it has plans to make significant investments in 'payments on WhatsApp' across India, including India-first features and driving adoption. The company, however, did not share details of its plans. The Meta-owned messaging app got its first greenlight for its payments service from the National Payments Council of India (NPCI) in November 2020 with a cap of 20 million users. A year later, in November 2021, the limit was raised to 40 million users.
Paytm CEO will get stock grants once m-cap recovers to IPO levelsRediff.com7 Apr 2022
Paytm founder and chief executive officer (CEO) Vijay Shekhar Sharma will receive his stock grants only after the company's market capitalisation (m-cap) stabilises at its initial public offering (IPO) level, the financial technology (fintech) major said on Wednesday. Paytm's stock price has been in free fall since its IPO at Rs 2,150 apiece, with m-cap at around Rs 1.4 trillion - plunging 76 per cent to a lifetime low of Rs 520 on March 23, when m-cap dropped below Rs 34,000 crore. Since then, the company's share price on the BSE has recovered some value and closed at Rs 637 on Wednesday.
At $14 billion, venture capital fund exits soared 10x in 2021Rediff.com6 Apr 2022
Three marquee exits accounted for nearly 60 per cent of the total exit value -- BillDesk's acquisition by PayU for $4.7 billion, Paytm's $2.5 billion initial public offering (IPO), and Zomato's public market debut of $1.3 billion.
MobiKwik to delay IPO; turns to private marketRediff.com9 Mar 2022
With the stock market turning choppy, fintech start-up MobiKwik, which had filed a draft red herring prospectus (DRHP) to raise around $250 million through an initial public offering (IPO), is now looking to raise money from the private market. "We will raise private money but we are not in dire need. "The business was profitable for the first time in the December quarter on a top line of around Rs 150 crore and that will be maintained in the March quarter also. We are generating cash," said Upasana Taku, co-founder of MobiKwik.
Ashneer Grover and the BharatPe controversy: A blow-by-blow accountRediff.com4 Mar 2022
"Yeh sab doglapan hai." With these words, Ashneer Grover not only called out an entrepreneur being hypocritical, but also shot to fame as a reality television star. It happened in the first few days of January, when the funded part of the start-up world needed some warm-up to get back to work, and inevitably Grover's antics on the show became a talking point. The Twitterati also debated whether it was unbecoming of a founder to diss a peer's business model with such abrasion. And hundreds of memes, with the dialogue set in various circumstances, flooded social media.
Tech start-ups struggle to move out of the redRediff.com24 Feb 2022
Technology start-ups that got listed in the last few quarters reported a hit to their December-quarter (Q3FY22) profitability due to higher marketing and employee costs. While fintech firms Paytm and PB Fintech saw their losses widen by 45 per cent year-on-year (YoY) to Rs 778 crore and 55 per cent to Rs 295 crore, respectively, food delivery company Zomato remained in the red despite narrowing its net loss by 81 per cent to Rs 66 crore. Meanwhile, online fashion and beauty products seller Nykaa saw its net profit drop 59 per cent to Rs 28 crore in Q3FY22.
Intel group company back with chip-making plan in IndiaRediff.com19 Feb 2022
'Our plan to set up a semiconductor facility in India is back on the table'
India's Covid testing data is a black holeRediff.com24 Jan 2022
'In the earlier waves, doubling of cases was happening at an interval of 4-6 days.' 'But in the case of omicron the doubling time we are seeing is in the range of 2-4 days.'
Start-up Inc urges policy push, focus on smaller towns for sector's growthRediff.com17 Jan 2022
While welcoming Prime Minister Narendra Modi's announcement on Saturday to celebrate January 16 as National Start-up Day, six years after the Start-up India Action Plan was launched by the government, stakeholders in the ecosystem say that more needs to be done at the policy level to unleash the next phase of growth in the sector. "The Start-up India programme's launch in 2016 was a turning point - that is when the promoter came to be known as the founder in the country and the word 'entrepreneur' entered the common lexicon. "But now we need a Start-up India 2.0 now for the next phase of growth of the ecosystem", said Siddarth Pai, managing partner of venture capital (VC) firm 3one4 Capital. Pai says that Startup India 2.0 must look at promoting Startups headquartered in tier II,III & IV cities and solving the problems of Bharat.
Bengaluru outstrips Beijing, Shanghai in tech VC funding in 2021Rediff.com14 Jan 2022
With $18.6 billion in investments, Bengaluru made it to the top-five leading VC funding hubs across the world in 2021 - following San Francisco Bay Area, New York, Greater Boston Region and London. However, it outstripped Beijing ($13.6 billion) and Shanghai ($13.4 billion). Global tech VC investment into start-ups hit a record level of $675 billion in 2021, doubling the previous all-time high of $340.6 billion in 2020, a report by London & Partners and dealroom.co.
Factors that spooked Paytm's market performanceRediff.com13 Jan 2022
Paytm CEO Vijay Shekhar Sharma said on Wednesday that the company's share market performance has been in line with that of global peers in the sector over the past six months due to macroeconomic factors. "Macro factors like quantitative easing, free money due to US monetary policy and other parameters led to a spook in the market in terms of pricing the IPO. "Paytm's shares have received a similar response to that of global peers in the last six months...But that is not a complete reasoning.
UPI-like digital healthcare interface to go live this weekRediff.com12 Jan 2022
'United Health Interface is in line with UPI. UPI is a language of money transfer, similarly, UHI is a set of protocols, which is going to create a language of health service delivery'
Will content creators drive the next wave of e-commerce?Rediff.com9 Jan 2022
First it was called content-led commerce. Then it came to be known as influencer-led commerce. And its latest iteration is creator economy. This evolution of the terminology for online personas impacting buying decisions -- through blogs, memes, bite-sized videos, and podcasts -- has happened over the past five to seven years.
India's E-Commerce: Great Leap ForwardRediff.com8 Jan 2022
Live commerce, quick commerce, group buying, WhatsApp commerce, dukaantech have made their mark.
Ola, Uber score 0 in gig worker rankingsRediff.com5 Jan 2022
Fairwork focuses on five principles of fair gig work: Fair pay, fair conditions, fair contracts, fair management, and fair representation.
Hiring by e-commerce firms set to rise in 2022Rediff.com30 Dec 2021
From a location perspective, the last quarter saw Kolkata and Gurgaon as top regions for employment in these sectors and among roles, sales and office services stood out.
How India's family offices are striking out on their own in start-up landRediff.com27 Dec 2021
Family offices are increasingly looking to invest directly in start-ups rather than through investment in venture capital (VC) firms. The shift is happening because of multiple reasons. Next-generation scions of wealthy families are conversant with how the start-up world works after they have spent time in Silicon Valley; start-up investment is rising to 10-15 per cent of family offices' portfolios from single digits; and they do not want to share gains of investment with VC firms. "While earlier they would prefer to invest in this asset class via venture capital (VC) funds as LPs (limited partners), now they are making direct investment in start-ups.
Cars24 raises $400 mn in funding, valuation up 83%Rediff.com21 Dec 2021
Cars24, an e-commerce platform for pre-owned vehicles, on Monday said it had raised $400 million in its Series G round of funding at a $3.3-billion valuation. The company's previous funding round was in September, when it raised $450 million at a $1.84-billion valuation. The latest round includes $300-million equity funding alongside $100 million of debt from various financial institutions in India, Australia, and the UAE.