The lowdown on angel tax; PhonePe crosses one million offline merchants
DIPP announced steps to ease the process for startups seeking exemption from being slapped with angel tax notices by the Department of Income Tax. But, the goal is not just to make the process transparent. The amendment does not apply for those years where the I-T Department has already passed an order. So, a startup that has already received assessment orders cannot apply for an exemption for those years. Nothing changes for those who have already received assessment orders on angel tax. Incidentally, the breather on angel tax comes exactly three years after Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the Startup India programme to encourage the startup ecosystem and entrepreneurship.
PhonePe crosses 1M offline merchants
Payments major PhonePe announced that it has grown its offline merchant base to over 1 million. According to the company, the growth has been made possible owing to multiple convenient solutions being offered by it, which makes it easier for the merchants to start accepting digital payments. Further, the fintech major's QR is interoperable, allowing users to pay from any UPI app or payment interface.
BYJU'S acquires Osmo
The year began with talks of edtech giant BYJU’S planning acquisition of edtech firms in the US. It looks like BYJU’S is well on track with its plans. The edtech company recently acquired US-based edtech startup Osmo for $120 million. For a while now, BYJU’S has been looking to launch into new markets, and acquire products that have a global offering, in a bid to bolster its international expansion plans.
Facebook takes India market directly under core wing
In a first-of-its-kind structural change, Facebook has designated India as a separate region with its own six-member board reporting directly to its headquarters (HQ) at Menlo Park, California. With this, India will no longer be a part of Facebook’s Asia-Pacific operations. The move, which comes ahead of the general elections in the country, is being seen as the social media giant’s measure to tackle an increasingly stringent regulatory network in India.
SaaS-based ITILITE raises Rs 30 Cr Series A funding
ITILITE, a SaaS-enabled platform that helps corporates reduce their travel cost and improve booking experience, has raised Rs 30 crore in a Series A led by existing investor Matrix Partners India, angel investor Ashish Gupta, and others. The new funding will be used to grow its engineering team to develop newer capabilities and to accelerate its sales and marketing efforts.
Turtlemint raises $25M funding led by Sequoia Capital
Mumbai-based Turtlemint announced that it has raised $25 million in fresh funding from Sequoia Capital. The round also saw participation from existing investors Nexus Venture Partners and Blume Ventures. The online insurance platform will be investing the fresh funds to grow by ten-fold over the coming year while hiring 100 more individuals across its technology functions.
Fractal Analytics raises $200 M led by Apax Partners
Big data and analytics company, Fractal Analytics has raised $200 million led by investment firm Apax Partners. With this round, the company will now be valued at $500 million. Moving ahead, the company will be using the fresh funds to accelerate growth both through M&A and organically. The team also aims to invest further in AI products and research.
Amul sends legal notice to Google India
Fake news and the spread of misinformation is a persistent problem and the latest one to fall victim to this menace is India’s dairy brand, Amul. The company recently sent a legal notice to Google India Pvt Ltd and internet domain registrar GoDaddy, alleging they “allowed” miscreants to run fake ad campaigns on their platforms and even earned revenues from these advertisements. Amul has also filed a complaint with Gujarat cyber cell to further investigate the matter.