Startup news and updates: daily roundup (June 9, 2022)

YourStory presents daily news roundups from the Indian startup ecosystem and beyond. Here's the roundup for Thursday, June 9, 2022.
0 CLAPS
0

Meesho records 5.35 million orders in its ‘Maha Indian Savings Sale’ on June 5 

Ecommerce platform Meesho recorded 5.35 million orders during its one-day sale event ‘Maha Indian Savings Sale’ on June 5. According to a release shared by the company, sales grew 428 percent over last year when it registered one million orders on June 6, 2021, the company said. 

Of the one lakh sellers that participated in the event, around 75 percent were from Tier II regions and beyond, including Bathinda, Haldwani, Solapur, and Tirunelveli, among others. During the sale event, the participating sellers’ sales were 217 percent more compared to business-as-usual, the statement added. 

“In the last six months, we have witnessed a 3.75X jump in seller participation in sale events. We will continue to fuel the discoverability of hyperlocal businesses and products, make ecommerce accessible to customers from all corners of the country, and innovate to become the preferred ecommerce destination for the next billion users in the country,” said Utkrishta Kumar, CXO of Business, Meesho. 

Meesho’s app downloads surged nearly five times on a yearly basis to over 102 million in the fourth quarter of financial year 2022.

ICICI Bank partners with ZestMoney to expand its ‘Cardless EMI’ facility

ICICI Bank on Thursday said it has partnered with pay-later fintech ZestMoney to expand its ‘Cardless EMI’ facility for purchases at retail and ecommerce platforms. 

The partnership will allow bank's customers to use pre-approved cardless credit to instantly buy products/ services using ZestMoney and take care of the cost into Equated Monthly Instalments (EMIs). 

Customers can convert transactions up to Rs 10 lakh into EMIs by putting their registered mobile number, PAN, and OTP (received on registered mobile number) at the check-out of the ecommerce website/app or at the PoS machine in retail outlets, without using cards.  

The bank can leverage ZestMoney's wide merchant base and 'Pay-in-3’ offering, where they can split the bill into three EMIs without extra cost. ICICI Bank’s pre-approved customers can avail of the facility for brands like Xiaomi, OnePlus, Sugar, Mamaearth, Decathlon, Boat, Yatra, Urban Ladder, Vijay Sales, and Titan Eye Plus, among others. 

ElectricPe appoints Rohit Agarwal as CTO

Electric Vehicle charging platform ElectricPe has appointed Rohit Agarwal as its Chief Technology Officer. He will lead the product tech strategy and development of the company as it aims to scale the public charging infrastructure network on its platform to 100,000 points by the end of this year.

Avinash Sharma, Co-founder & CEO, ElectricPe, said, “We are delighted to have Rohit on board as we continue to build the largest consumer focussed EV public charging and demand generation App in India. Rohit’s deep technology expertise will bring in the right thought-leadership to enable us to create the best-in-class user experience for our customers. In addition to helping accelerate the adoption of The latest technologies, Rohit will play a critical role in strengthening our development verticals and growing our offerings.” 

Rohit joins the ElectricPe team with 11 years of prior experience in technology and product development having worked with early-stage startups.

Refyne expands leadership with four key hires

Refyne, an early-wage access platform, has appointed four senior executives to its leadership team. It has added Karthik Krishna as VP Engineering, Krishan Agarwal as VP Finance, Megha Sharma as VP People & Culture, and Smriti Somani as VP, Enterprise Marketing.

The company, which was founded in 2021, has a base of 110 employees. 

Apoorv Kumar, Co-founder & CTO, Refyne, said: “Their expertise will be the catalyst that propels us and helps realise our mission of enabling financial wellness for the Indian workforce. We’re excited about their infusion with the existing team’s capabilities and look forward to improving Refyne for employers and their employees.” 

He added that Refyne plans to grow the team across product, sales, client success, marketing, engineering further and expand its presence across India.

Yamaha Motors to enter EV two-wheeler leasing in New Delhi with Zypp Electric

Yamaha leasing company (MBSI) will enter New Delhi with two-wheeler Asset Management Services through its Indian company--Moto Business Service India (MBSI), a mobility solutions company, it said in a statement. 

Its first investment in New Delhi is with Zypp with the launch of 250 Hero Electric two-wheelers. Zypp Electric provides last-mile delivery service to ecommerce segments across logistics, groceries, food and pharma sectors, with current fleet size of 5,000 electric scooters. 

"The Indian electric vehicle mobility market is growing in line with the overall global trend and will see rapid traction and growth for shared two-wheelers and four-wheelers in the EV segment. We will onboard EV vehicles across multiple cities and generate employment avenues for the youth of India," said Shoji Shiraishi, Managing Director, MBSI. 

"We need to create an evolving ecosystem that can address all challenges and enable millions of  businesses to adopt sustainable modes of transport. We plan to work with more environment friendly mobility companies in the future and to transform the overall shared mobility space in India by bringing our financial and strategic experience from our stakeholders," he added.

Syfe appoints Saurabh Seth as head of talent acquisition in India

Digital investment platform Syfe on Thursday appointed Saurabh Seth as its Head of Talent Acquisition in India as it plans to further strengthen its team in the country.  

The Singapore-headquartered company has a 80-member strong team working out of Syfe’s tech hub in India, building its full-suite wealth management and online brokerage offering used by customers across Asia. Syfe’s tech team in India has tripled its strength in 2021 and looks to expand further in 2022

“Talent is at the heart of our company’s growth story and we believe in the power of each and every employee at Syfe to build our mission of democratising finance into reality. Our tech team is responsible for building the world-class products used by investors across Asia. Saurabh’s rich experience in technical recruiting will help in building a strong talent pipeline, as we gear up to expand our footprint in more geographies,” said Snehal Samant, VP, Product, Syfe.

Shreyas Iyer partners with metabolism tracking platform Ultrahuman

Cricketer Shreyas Iyer has partnered with metabolism tracking platform Ultrahuman to optimise his training and performance. 

Shreyas said, “I have always been very focused on my health and fitness and look to understand my body to perform to my best. In my life, there is always a constant learning graph and evaluation that helps me evolve and become a better player. I strongly believe in using technology as an aid for bettering my performance and staying fit. Ultrahuman gives me better insights into my performance, training, and my diet, which help me be more focused, feel good and give my best on and off the field.”

Ultrahuman has made available a team of sports scientists and coaches who are working closely with him to empower him with intelligent data-driven modifications to his routine and training. 

Financepeer launches numberless dual-interface card for students

Edu-fintech startup Financepeer has launched UVA Card, a prepaid contactless card, in partnership with Visa. The card will act as a numberless prepaid photo ID card for students, parents, and institutes to make day-to-day transactions easy and hassle-free.

"We are launching a numberless dual interface product which is a photo ID card to make cashless transactions easy for students, parents and institutes with just a tap. To make electronic payments safer and hassle-free for our students, these Visa cards have been designed with EMV chips," said Rohit Gajbhiye, CEO and Founder, of Finance Peer. 

The company has partnered with more than 10,000 educational institutions with a Pan-India footprint, to deliver affordable fee financing products, Edu-tech content, and fee payment solutions.

It had raised $31 million in Series B in April this year. 

kWh Bikes registers 78,000 pre-orders for dealership dispatch

Bengaluru-based electric scooters startup kWh Bikes said it has registered 78,000 pre-orders in the form of signed Letters of Intent for its upcoming e-scooter from 75 dealers across India

The company has received orders worth more than Rs 1,000 crore for its scooters, which it plans to launch in 2023. It has partnered with existing automotive dealers and automotive players for distribution across nine regions including Karnataka, Delhi, Maharashtra, Haryana, UP, Bihar, Gujarat, West Bengal, and Rajasthan. 

The startup had raised $2 million in a seed round led by LetsVenture, with Better Capital, Cloud Capital, Founder Backer Capital, and Faad Network, among others.

Wellcurve adds over 250 health experts

Health and Nutrition startup Wellcurve has added over 250 health experts ranging from nutritionists, fitness trainers, and chefs, as it recently forayed into video commerce. It aims to get over 3,000 to its community by the end of 2022. 

The startup was founded in 2019 by Nikhil Mehra and aims to create expert recommendations, healthy recipes, and beneficial videos to create a community of health-minded individuals who are focussed on making India healthier and happier. 

Currently, the startup offers over 1,500 varieties of handpicked and curated nutritional products online from leading brands, backed with fast delivery right to the doorstep. 

Nikhil Mehra, Founder and CEO at Wellcurve.in, stated, "The videos created by our network of health experts have information on why to consume the product or how to consume the product. With our aim to make health and nutrition available to all and make India healthier and happier, we are the first in the industry to launch a video commerce option to buy the products directly from the health expert videos recommending healthy food products suiting your health goals. Within just a few weeks of launching our platform, we already have an average of 50,000+ views on the videos and have been getting 40+ daily orders via these expert videos.”

ITLH to hire over 100 employees in FY 2022

Information Technology Learning Hub (ITLH), an incubator that helps students gain proficiency in coding skills and Design (UIUX), is planning to hire more than 100 employees in the year FY 2022 for their office headquarters in Navi Mumbai. The company is expecting to grow 10 times its current size by the end of this year, as it expands to Tier I cities and also increases their focus in cities such as Abu Dhabi, Qatar, and Dubai. 

Presently, it has a 40-member team and the new recruitments would bolster the six core verticals of the organisation, including sales, marketing, quality analysis, learning experience wing, trainers and mentors, and human resources.

"Our novel experiential learning methodology has created a pioneering pedagogy that is practically an industry simulation of skills and competencies. ITLH has been trusted by many students in India and the Middle East as a career propeller," said Alex George, the Co-Founder and Managing Director of ITLH. 

"We are looking to add more courses, open more gateways for placements and bulk training in colleges, entrenching professionals with corporate training," he added. 

T-Hub selects 12 Australian startups for The Big LEAP incubator program

T-Hub, an innovation hub and ecosystem enabler, said it has selected 12 Australian startups for the first cohort of the Big LEAP Incubator program in partnership with La Trobe University; Arrow Digital, a digital marketing agency; and Investible, an early-stage venture capital firm, to provide them access to Indian market. 

These startups will be provided soft landing and enterprising opportunities in the Indian market. The hybrid program will guide and mentor the startups in the areas of go-to-market strategy, business expansion plans, local market access and networking opportunities. 

As a part of the twelve-month program, with expert mentors from T-Hub and its partners will work with these startups to fine-tune the expansion business plans of the startups, test their ideas for the Indian market, hone their skills, and build a strong network with Indian stakeholders for their long term success. 

Selected startups for the program are CI Business Solutions and Analytics, AgVantage Commodities Pty Ltd, Miifile Pty Ltd, Brane Labs Pty Ltd, CashD Pty Ltd, Sixti, Next Address Pty Ltd, Mist Financial Pty Ltd, Tech Ideaz Pty Ltd, New Will Tech Holdings Pty Ltd, Meetmycoach pty ltd, and Edit on the Spot. 

Toronto Business Development Centre (TBDC) taking 25 Indian startups to participate in tech conference Collision 2022

Canada’s India-focused incubator Toronto Business Development Centre (TBDC) said it will take 25 selected Indian start-ups to Toronto and participate in Collision 2022, a start-up tech conference, which takes place in Toronto. This year’s Collision conference will be held in Toronto from June 20th to June 23, 2022.

Representational Image

Engineer bringing Technology to Life Pvt Ltd (EBTL), Mapmygenome, MakeStories, and UnRemote are among the selected startups that will participate in the Collision conference. The founders of the startups will get the opportunity to meet investors, technology innovators, potential partners and mentors, and ecosystem players who will assist them in succeeding in the lucrative North American market.

“We are excited to welcome the founders of these startups to Canada, a promising startup destination. Engaging with relevant and meaningful investors, technology innovators, potential partners, mentors, and ecosystem players will undoubtedly be critical to boost and accelerate the growth of these startups and will assist them in expanding internationally,” said Vikram Khurana, Chairman of TBDC and CEO of BHive.

Ministry of Education, AICTE, and AWS to upskill students in India in cloud computing, machine learning

The Ministry of Education is working with Amazon Web Services (AWS) with an aim to impart cloud computing and machine learning (ML) skills to higher education students in India.

Amazon Internet Services Private Limited (AISPL), which undertakes the resale and marketing of AWS in India, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE), a statutory body under the Ministry. 

Through the MoU, AWS will provide students access to AWS Educate, a program that offers self-paced online cloud learning resources and labs, designed to help people learn, practice, and evaluate cloud skills. 

“Over the course of the pandemic, we have seen organisations of all sizes accelerate their digital transformation plans by several years, driving an increased need for employers and their workers to advance skills training for cloud computing, cybersecurity, and machine learning," said Sunil PP, Lead—Education, Space, and Nonprofits, Amazon Internet Services Private Limited, AWS India and South Asia.

Samsung launches ‘Solve for Tomorrow’, an innovation competition for India’s youth to solve real-world problems

Samsung has launched a youth-focused, national education and innovation competition ‘Solve for Tomorrow’, inviting GenZ in India to come up with innovative ideas in the areas of education, environment, healthcare, and agriculture. 

Samsung aims to provide support to youth in India aged 16-22 years from across cities, towns, and villages to turn their ideas to solve real-world issues into action.

The top 50 teams that are selected will be mentored by industry experts and Foundation for Innovation and Technology Transfer (FITT) at the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi (IIT Delhi) to help enhance their ideas, along with a boot camp at IIT Delhi, a certificate of participation, and vouchers worth INR 100,000 for online courses in design thinking, STEM, innovation, leadership, among others. 

Three winners will get Rs 1 crore and mentoring for six months to take their ideas to the next level. 

Mylab forays into the female healthcare segment

Mylab Discovery Solutions launched PregaScreen, an at-home pregnancy test kit as it forays into the female healthcare segment. PregaScreen is priced at Rs 55.

“In line with the company’s strategy of offering affordable, value-added products for the consumers, we have entered into the female healthcare segment. PregaScreen is the first product in this segment, and the portfolio will be expanded with many other launches. We are confident that PregaScreen, which is highly reliable and accurate, will help women during these crucial moments in their reproductive health journey," Debarshi Dey, Marketing Director, Mylab Discovery Solutions. 

Technopark@iitk signs MoU with UPEIDA to accelerate R&D activities under the UP Defence Industrial Corridor

IIT Kanpur Research and Technology Park Foundation (Technopark@iitk) on Tuesday signed an MoU with the UP Expressways Industrial Development Authority (UPEIDA) to accelerate R&D activities under the UP Defence Industrial Corridor (UPDIC) and attract defence companies to Uttar Pradesh.

The partnership will strengthen the ecosystem for the defence industry in the state with UPEIDA inviting defence industry to set up their production and manufacturing units in the state and Technopark@iitk reaching out to companies to set up their R&D units.

"The UP Defence Industrial Corridor is a very crucial development for the state. IIT Kanpur is delighted to be associated with it in various capacities. As a proponent of multi-stakeholder collaboration, we will leverage our institute’s R&D, and technological resources to work towards making not only the state but also India atmanirbhar in defence," Prof. Abhay Karandikar, Director, IIT Kanpur, said. 

Brillare unveils its latest consumer awareness campaign

Brillare, a homegrown personal care brand, unveiled its new campaign “Don’t be #NaturalFool” to raise awareness about the nuances of adopting truly natural, chemical-free products for personal care routines.

Brillare offers vegan, natural, and cruelty-free products made with no chemicals and preservatives. 

Jigar Patel, CEO of Brillare, who is also a formulation scientist with more than 20 patents said, “This idea is aligned with Brillare’s vision to share honest and truthful communication that adds genuine trust among consumers. This campaign helps in simplifying the selection process of products instead of blindly listening to bloggers and brands claiming natural products. We want to create a movement to ingrain the practice of reading labels while shopping natural products among consumers.”

(This is an ongoing story and will be updated with the latest updates/ deal announcements throughout the day)

Edited by Megha Reddy

Latest

Updates from around the world