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Focused on tech startups in the US and in India
NEWSLETTER - May, 2019
PORTFOLIO UPDATES

Shubh Loans strengthens its distribution advantage by tying up with 400 SMEs

Shubh Loans, one of India’s leading fintech startups, has built a robust distribution network by tying up with 400 SMEs across the country. This gives the company a current coverage potential of almost 7 million employees across tier 1 and tier 2 cities. Almost 40% of its portfolio is the New to Credit (NTC) segment. The company crossed $ 15 mn in loan disbursals in FY18-19.

 
 

Fakespot featured in the New York Times

An in-depth article in the New York Times explores how the online review system came into existence and how it is impacting people transacting online. Saoud, the CEO of Fakespot, exposes the tactics of 3rd party sellers on platforms like Amazon to game the review system, including sellers pumping the rating of their competitors to get them banned on the platform.

 
 
 
INDUSTRY UPDATE

A comparison of two food tech unicorns in India - Swiggy and Zomato

Indian food tech market is a battle of two companies which have different approaches to future growth. While Swiggy is focusing more on private labels, building out its own delivery fleet and expanding into other deliveries, Zomato is betting on solving the pain points of its partner restaurants.

 
 

Is subscription the panacea for news and media companies?

Subscription is the business model of the moment for media companies, with several large media houses like New York Times successfully pivoting to it. However, by switching massively to a subscription model, the sector is exposing itself to a crushing competition that can be mapped in two dimensions: the amount of discretionary income a person or a household can allocate to information (general, local, specialized) and the time that can be devoted to consumption.

 
 

VC investors in India are increasingly participating in Series B & C rounds

While there are a large number of seed and late stage funds, mid stage (Series B & C) has traditionally not seen dedicated pools of capital. New funds like A91, Iron Pillar and Mirae are now exclusively targeting this opportunity. The market in India is now deep enough for dedicated growth stage investors.

 
 

Content moderation in online social media platforms

Content moderation has become a hot topic for online platforms. Apps like Tik Tok have been banned in India, Bangladesh and Indonesia because of objectionable content on its platform, while Facebook and YouTube face regular scrutiny. Platforms have deployed human moderators to filter such content, but in the aftermath of events like Christchurch shooting, they still struggle with deciding what is permissible on the platform.

 
 
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