Mobikwik partners with Ola; Google.org announces $3 M grant for 2 NGOs; OYE! Loans raises funds
Digital wallet services company Mobikwik has partnered with cab aggregator Ola and will allow users to directly book a cab and make payments from the Mobikwik app. As a launch offer, customers can earn Rs 50 SuperCash on their first five rides, and can alternatively use 10 percent SuperCash to get discount of up to Rs 100 on every Ola booking. Mobikwik will also offer a 100 percent cashback offer to 1,000 users everyday, for booking rides through their wallet between 4 pm and 7 pm and between 8 am and 10 am.
Google’s philanthropic arm, Google.org, has announced a $3 million grant for two not-for-profits in India – The Central Square Foundation (CSF) and The Teacher App. This makes India the biggest recipient of grants from Google.org. In 2017, it had invested $8.4 million across four Indian NGOs (Pratham Education Foundation, Pratham Books StoryWeaver, Learning Equality, and Million Sparks Foundation). Google revealed on its blog that its grants have helped these NGOs reach more than 800,000 students and teachers across the country.
Shared workspaces provider Smartworks announced its new facility in Bengaluru that encompasses a footprint of three lakh square feet and 6,000 seats, taking the company’s total office space to 10 lakh square feet in India. This is in line with the company’s plan to grow its footprint by nearly 400 percent, with new centres in other Tier I cities Mumbai, Chennai, and Hyderabad. Smartworks provides fully serviced offices that offer a day pass, smart cubes, smart labs, and smart suites.
OYE Fintech, which operates a consumer-focused lending platform called OYE! Loans, has raised $2.25 million from GAIN Credit Inc. OYE! Loans currently serves new-to-credit and new-to-workforce consumers with affordable one-year EMI loans, with ticket-sizes ranging between Rs 10,000 and Rs 1 lakh. The company leverages alternative data to assess risk on customers who have thin or non-existent footprints on the credit bureau.
Instagram is finally debuting its long-awaited native payments option. The feature is visible for select partners and users in the US and the UK right now and allows users to add a debit or credit card to their Instagram profile with a Security PIN that they can then use to make reservations, book appointments, and the like. Instagram plans to add more functionality in the future, although there is no word yet on a timeline for a global rollout.
In the rather surprising news, Warren Buffet revealed that his company Berkshire Hathaway bought an additional 75 million shares of tech giant Apple last quarter. This is in addition to the 165.3 million Apple shares the firm already held at the end of 2017. Warren is a long-time admirer of the Cupertino, California-headquartered company, and may reveal the reason behind the purchase at Berkshire Hathaway’s annual shareholder meeting later this weekend.