The startup world last week was pretty much decked up with the news of acquisitions and funding. While enterprise cloud computing company Nutanix acquired automation startup Calm.io, Mahindra Comviva-incubated TerraPay acquired UK-based Pay2Global. On the funding side, Paytm announced its raising $300 million, while home décor marketplace Livspace raised Rs 100 crore.
Amidst all this, the news of product launches by startups also caught our attention. - OYO’s hotel rooms for unmarried couples, CarDekho.com launching a digital loan platform for used car dealers, and Amagi announcing Live Linear OTT Playout Platform, all had us sitting up and taking notice.
Budget hotel aggregator OYO Rooms has launched ‘Relationship Mode’ to remove the tag of ‘No hotel rooms for unmarried couples’ from some of its hotels. With Relationship Mode, unmarried couples can see only those listed hotels that will allow them, even with local IDs, to check in without any hassles.
According to Kavikrut, Chief Growth Officer of OYO, there is no law in India that prohibits hotels from hosting unmarried guests, or those who belong to the same city in which the hotel is located.
The startup claims that they made it very transparent and easy for couple-guests to discover those hotels that offer them a seamless check-in upon furnishing the required ID proof. They are listed both on the website and the company's app. OYOs are available across 100 cities in India, and 60 percent of their current inventory qualifies as couple-friendly.
Online auto portal CarDekho launched a digital loan platform for used car dealers. With this platform, a car buyer can enquire for loan offers on any pre-inspected car and check the eligibility with multiple bank partners. Even users can apply for loans by uploading their KYC and basic documents.
CarDekho has partnered with HDFC Bank, Axis, Tata Capital and Mahindra Finance, and is claimed to have developed deep tech integrations with these banks, which will bring down processing time to 72 hours, as compared to the average of 10-15 days currently.
Moreover, its CarDekho.com Trustmark certification report ensures assessment of car quality. The startup claims to have facilitated annualised loan GMV of more than $20 million since the launch of the pilot in Delhi NCR.
Cloud-based broadcast infrastructure provider Amagi will now allow TV networks and content owners to launch live and linear OTT channels on the cloud, and operate a unified platform for Video-On-Demand (VoD) TV without any hardware.
Cloudport OTT supports advanced graphics functions including dynamic graphics, digital video effects, and real-time social media integration capability, in addition to switching to live feeds.
The platform is equipped with a live MCR capability on the cloud, which can manage the entire OTT playout workflow remotely using a web-based UI. Built on Amazon AWS cloud infrastructure, CLOUDPORT OTT can integrate with Amagi’s server-side OTT ad insertion solution, THUNDERSTORM, for content monetisation.
Advertisers using Amagi can target audiences at both regional and individual levels across traditional TV and OTT multiscreen platforms. Amagi will showcase CLOUDPORT OTT at the upcoming IBC 2016 conference in Amsterdam.
Regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) recently proposed wide-ranging relaxations to its norms for real estate investment trusts (REITs) and infrastructure investment trusts (InvITs), and an easier set of listing rules for startups.
The government putting more focus on easing listing norms for Indian startups can further make more room for innovations. Keep watching this space for more updates on the innovative products from the startup world.