1947 Tech 🇮🇳: 78
Once a week newsletter: Insights on Tech, markets, startups, venture capital, and foreign investments in India
1. Lightspeed & Sequoia hit the jackpot with Oyo
Tech ecosystem in India is on Fire.
Kunal Shah, an Indian repeat founder wrote the following tweet last week which pretty much sums up the current tech ecosystem in India.
Just ~4 years ago $~450M of FreeCharge was largest internet exit.
A year ago Flipkart exit was >$19B.
This year Ritesh Agarwal buys back shares worth $2B from existing investors.
If this doesn’t make you believe startup India's time has come, nothing will.
It’s a unique situation that seems VCs like Lightspeed and Sequoia cash out huge amounts before a conventional liquidity event.
Venture capital business is either go big or go home business. Lightspeed India and Sequoia India went big with OYO.
Lightspeed invested $20 million — $1 billion return on Investment
Sequoia invested $27 million — $500 million return on investment
2. Ebix to acquire Yatra at an enterprise value of USD 337.8 million
The travel market is massive in India. The travel industry is on track to grow $85 billion by 2022, with online platforms accounting for 45% of all transactions
Indian millennials are funding a lot of their lifestyle needs by borrowing money. For instance, according to digital lending platform, IndiaLends, has reported a 55 percent growth in personal loans for travel purposes. More interestingly, 85 percent of these loan seekers are millennials
And Ebix gets it.
US-based software firm Ebix Inc has signed a definitive agreement with Yatra Online Inc to acquire the online travel agency through a merger deal at an enterprise value of USD 337.8 million
3. Icertis becomes India’s third SaaS unicorn with $115M funding
It’s a good sign for an economy as well as for the tech ecosystem when the innovation and value creation is spread out throughout the country.
A lot of innovation is coming out of Pune. A city which is a 3-hour drive from Mumbai. And I have been told that the quality of life in Pune is much better than the quality of life in Mumbai.
Icertis is the second Saas unicorn that has come out of Pune in the last two months.
Druva was the first.
The Enterprise contract management software provider raised $115 million in fresh funding led by US-based venture capital firm Greycroft and Premji Invest.
Icertis counts companies such as Google, Microsoft, Daimler, Airbus, Johnson & Johnson, Lupin, Infosys, Wipro and Cognizant as customers. In industries such as pharmaceuticals, it already counts five of the top seven players as clients.
4. Wi-Fi on the go: Govt pushes to keep Bharat connected
Just like roads, railroads, ports, and airports are the backbone of the manufacturing industry of a country.
Access to the internet is the backbone of the technology industry of a country.
India is doing everything possible to win this race.
India already provides the cheapest data in the world.
The next phase of Internet growth in India is to bring Bharat online.
Bharat = Tier 2, 3, 4 cities and rural India
You may soon be able to access all public Wi-Fi hotspots through a data plan of a carrier of your choice bought at a tea kiosk, switching seamlessly from one carrier to another as you change location, in what could be the “first-of-its-kind” model in the world.
While public Wi-Fi — often free for a limited time — is being increasingly offered in several closed public places such as airports and restaurants, the government wants to extend access to the internet to even neighborhood local markets, bus stops and roadside tea stalls, besides corporate parks and public buildings, through hotspots
Over 5 million Wi-Fi hotspots will be deployed all over India in two years.