WATCH: The week that was - From a chat with Kunal Shah of Cred to Amazon’s entry into foodtech, ambiguities of Income Tax

This week, we have some news or our own, and more about the startup ecosystem. From in-depth conversations with Kunal Shah of Cred and Ankush Aggarwal of Avail Finance to Indian foodtech’s latest battle.

How does India of 2025 look like? What does the future hold for India? What are the elements of today’s India we’ve to carry with us to reach there? There’s no doubt that technology-enabled and data-enriched solutions will define India’s growth in the next decade.

Over 1.35 billion Indians crave for convenience, prosperity, and resources for all. As enterprising as ever, our entrepreneurs are leading the way by building for tomorrow.

And now to celebrate the spirit of entrepreneurship, we, at YourStory, are absolutely thrilled to bring you a very special 10th edition of TechSparks– India's oldest and most prolific startup conference.

So please be there and we can tell you that you will make some big business connections.

Chinese smartphone maker OnePlus has opened its first Indian R&D facility in Hyderabad. According to the company, this centre will serve as one of the main sites for the company's innovation for global markets.

One Plus says that it will drive the development of artificial intelligence and machine learning across its products, along with of 5G technology.

The company announced its plans to invest Rs 1,000 crore into its R&D facility in Hyderabad over the next three years.

Amazon is now taking on Swiggy and Zomato with grand plans of entering the foodtech sector of India.

The planned entry of Amazon into the food delivery space in India has raised a lot of expectations, and this increased competition will only strengthen this ecosystem. It now remains to be seen how market leaders like Swiggy and Zomato will handle this competition. 

Notwithstanding the ongoing slugfest between restaurant owners and food delivery app companies like Zomato on their steep discounting model, this market is expected to be a $17 billion opportunity by 2023, recording an annual growth rate of 16 percent, according to a report by business consultancy firm Market Research Future.

At present, the food delivery space in India is dominated by Swiggy and Zomato, with the presence of other players like Uber Eats and Foodpanda. It is into this crowded market that Amazon has planned its entry, and it has only aroused the curiosity of many.

Watch our video where we go into what made headlines the past week:

Debolina and Sutrishna

If there is one thing Alexa users have in common, it is patience. As diligent and careful as one tries to be with their input voices, the output voice from Amazon’s virtual assistant always leaves some dissatisfaction.

“Instead of building a new Alexa skill, why not bring it into an existing experience and make that experience significantly better? That was our reimagination and that’s why we built Slang Labs, a platform to quickly build voice augmented experiences,” Kumar Rangarajan, Co-founder of Slang Labs, told YourStory during a Future of Work conference.

However, Kumar is neither a CTO nor a geek. He calls himself an obsessive dictator at Slang Labs because he says it sounds relaxing and not-so-serious.

Having his career revolve around acquisitions, Kumar sees that his life comes full circle, once every five years.

In this week’s Techie Tuesday, Kumar talks about his love for programming during college days, his early stint at GE and HP, and what made him take the entrepreneurial plunge with Little Eye Labs and later Slang Labs.

This week, YourStory Founder and CEO Shradhra Sharma spoke to Kunal Shah about business strategy and the startup ecosystem.

His second startup Cred recently raised close to $120 million (approx. Rs 861.39 crores) as a part of its Series B round led by fintech fund Ribbit Capital, Gemini Investments, as well as existing investor Sequoia Capital (through its fund, SCI Investments V).

Next, we spoke to Sunny Gupta who built four tech startup ventures in the enterprise software space and saw equally successful exits, with the last one going up to $2 billion. This has not dimmed the appetite of Sunny, a Chandigarh-born entrepreneur who is based in the US. For him, the glass is still half full, and there is much more to accomplish.

While studying in the US, Sunny struggled and made his way up as he was financially on his own. He started his first venture at the age of 26, but it was soon sold to another company. And the pattern continued as both his second and third ventures were taken over by larger enterprises. Read about what makes him the toughest entrepreneur around.

(Edited by Saheli Sen Gupta)