25 Mar 2020

Startup NEWS, Mar 25, 2020

1. BigBasket buys micro delivery startup DailyNinja

  • BigBasket said it has acquired micro-delivery startup DailyNinja to consolidate its subscription delivery business.
  • The deal is estimated to value Bengaluru-based DailyNinja at around Rs 48 crore in stock, people aware of the matter told ET requesting anonymity. The online grocery delivery startup had earlier acquired Pune-based RainCan and Bengaluru-based Morningcart for its morning delivery service, BBDaily.
  • While DailyNinja has around 1,10,000 daily transacting customers and a network of 2,000 milkman partners across India, BBDaily makes about 1,60,000 deliveries per day.
  • “Business with small traders is a key and growing part of BigBasket’s business,” said Hari Menon, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of BigBasket. “We also aim to improve delivery productivity and achieve breakeven much sooner than planned.”
  • In November, ET reported that the hyperlocal milk delivery segment is expected to see further consolidation over the next 9-12 months, driven by poor economics, complex supply chain and longer gestation period to profitability.
  • DailyNinja counts Matrix Partners and Sequoia Capital as investors and has raised about $10 million.

2. Facebook in talks to acquire 10% stake in Jio: Report

  • Facebook is said to be in negotiations to acquire a stake in Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Jio Infocomm, the Financial Times reported, citing two people with knowledge of the matter.
  • It said the social media giant was close to an initial agreement to pick up a 10% stake but discussions hadn’t moved forward on account of the global disruption following the coronavirus outbreak. A deal was to have been announced by March-end, the FT said.
  • The FT report said Google had also been talking to Jio separately, citing one of the people above. Microsoft had said last year that it would provide cloud-computing services to businesses along with Jio. India is the biggest market for Facebook with 328 million monthly users and the company’s WhatsApp messaging app has 400 million users in the country, also the most in the world.
  • Jio and Facebook didn’t respond to ET’s queries and Google couldn’t immediately be reached for comment.

3. CoinDCX raises $3 million from Bain fund, BitMEX owner & others

  • One of India’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges, CoinDCX, has raised $3 million from backers including Bain Capital Ventures, signaling that global investors are drawn to the space after a favorable Supreme Court decision.
  • The virtual currency trading platform said it would use the funds to promote adoption of cryptocurrencies as well as boost product development and marketing. Investors in the funding round included veteran crypto investor Polychain Capital and HDR Global Trading, which operates the crypto exchange BitMEX.
  • CoinDCX’s Series A funding came just three weeks after a group of cryptocurrency bourses won a major victory in the Supreme Court — one that removed restraints placed by India’s Reserve Bank in April 2018 that had effectively outlawed virtual currencies for nearly two years. CoinDCX said user numbers had jumped about 10-fold since the ban lifted.
  • “India is a market with a huge potential for cryptocurrencies,” said Sumit Gupta, co-founder and chief executive officer of CoinDCX. “Crypto as an asset class is poised for takeoff.” The country has a couple hundred million unbanked citizens and a massive dollar remittance market that make it fertile territory.

4. Covid-19: Flipkart temporarily suspends all services

  • Ecommerce major Flipkart on Wednesday said it is temporarily suspending operations in view of the 21-day nationwide lockdown due to Covid-19 outbreak.
  • “Hello fellow Indians, We are temporarily suspending operations. Your needs have always been our priority and our promise is that we will be back to serve you, as soon as possible,” say a message on the website.
  • Walmart-owned Flipkart has been struggling to carry out its business in the last few days as restrictions on movement of people and goods were enforced across different states. Other eCommerce portals like Amazon, Snapdeal, BigBasket and Grofers have also faced similar logistical problems.

5. Covid-19: Home rental, student housing startups offer special rates, flexibility

  • With multiple cities under lockdown to tackle the Covid-19 pandemic, home rental and student housing startups have launched initiatives to help students and young professionals find accommodation at short notice.
  • New Delhi-based shared living startup Stanza Living is offering accommodation at a more flexible contract period and rentals to students and working professionals who are being asked to vacate their hostels or paying guest (PG) accommodation in cities such as Bengaluru, Hyderabad, and Pune.
  • Twenty-one-year-old Ravi Kumar Sunkhesvarapu, an IT employee from Ongole in Andhra Pradesh, moved into a Stanza Living residence in Hyderabad last week.
  • “I’m in a relaxed frame of mind in this current situation when PGs and hostels are asking people to vacate and finding good quality accommodation is a challenge. I moved into a mini-suite which was ideal, clean and with all the amenities one would expect…They have been sanitizing each room every single day and providing each resident with all required precautions,” he said, over e-mail.
About Philomathes Jigyasu

Philomathes (pronounced as fillo-MAY-thus) is a fictional character at VAYUZ (https://www.vayuz.com), who is on a never ending journey called “LEARNING”. In a way, Philomathes embodies VAYUZ - Way of life, which is if you are not learning then you are not breathing. The word Philomathes, comes from the Greek roots philo and philein meaning "to love" and the Greek roots mathos (MAH-thos) and mathesis (muh-THAYSIS) meaning “learning”. Philomathes through his Blogs and Vlogs (Video Blogs) will share his experience, learnings and thoughts. In his tryst to learn and understand, he would also seek answers to questions. So if you would like to join him in this incredible journey called “ life” then feel free to write to him on philomathes.jigyasu@vayuz.com. Always remember, knowledge is all around us, we just need to keep our guards down and senses on.

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