Quikr and the unacquisition of CommonFloor

"This is a crap product. There is nothing in it. We didn’t want to touch it but Tiger made us buy it. We will have to start from scratch,” Manish Sinha, executive vice president of QuikrHomes, reportedly told a room full of people. He was referring to CommonFloor. The room full of people had section heads from CommonFloor and...

Introducing Quikr week

“Quikr, Quikr on the wall, are you the fairest unicorn of them all”? If the startup ecosystem were to be seen as a caste system (and some would say that it often is), the very apex of this pyramid would be populated by an exalted set of companies known as ‘unicorns’—companies that have been valued at over a billion dollars.While...

Snapdeal has some good news. And bad

 Snapdeal, once a serious challenger to fellow unicorn, Flipkart, is now just a fraction of its 2015 self. Two-thirds to be precise.The Ken sent Snapdeal a detailed questionnaire last week but despite repeated reminders, a reply was not forthcoming till the time of publishing.On January 11, Snapdeal brought in Jason Kothari from Housing. Kothari will now be the chief...

Arranged Marriage

In the two years between July 2013 and July 2015, Flipkart would go on to raise capital at a dizzying pace – seven times – taking in a cumulative amount of $3 billion from numerous blue-blooded investors. During the same period, its valuation would shoot up over ten-fold from roughly $1.5 billion to $15 billion.It was a company that...

Pop goes the Housing.com bubble

The rumour mills have been abuzz that PropTiger is going to acquire Housing. Over the last couple of weeks, The Ken spoke to six people, a mix of investors, sources inside Housing and competitors, and all of them said that the deal is almost through. That it will be announced shortly. The deal size is about $20-25 million. All...

The evolution of E-commerce transactions

Until just a couple of years ago, the successful completion of an online purchase transaction was seen as the holy grail for e-commerce companies. Given the woeful state of broadband speeds or unpredictability of payment interfaces or just lack of confidence in users, successful payment for a transaction was the ultimate metric to track and improve.But that’s changing. Thanks...

The GST gamble of ClearTax

There is something very secular about taxes like the universal disdain people have for both filing and paying.  Another matter altogether that chartered accountants (CAs) have thrived on this sentiment. With life being finally breathed into the 16-year-old zombie called the Goods and Services Tax (GST), for businesses, CAs are likely to be on speed dial; its imminent rollout has got...

Bluestone’s battle-ready mode

As one of the few startups backed by Ratan Tata, Bluestone garnered enough attention in 2014. It didn’t disappoint him, though. The startup has since emerged as the second largest online jewellery firm in India, after Caratlane. It designs, manufactures and sells jewellery under its own brand. Having recently raised Rs 200 crore, Bluestone is striving to maintain its growth...

Delhivery is growing

Back in May 2011 when Delhivery began its operations, it was a hyperlocal food delivery startup in Gurugram. Three months later, the company pivoted and became an e-commerce logistics company, thereby cashing in on the online retail boom that was ushering in. Today, it is one of India's largest third-party e-commerce logistics and fulfillment startup, with clients like Flipkart,...

E for Eccentric

I asked an artist if he had to paint e-commerce as a concept how would he make it. He shut his eyes and made these vivid brush strokes in air—red unicorns with half-sawed horns galloping in a river of money. Now that sounds about right. Merci, Monsieur Monet for that impression, which is not all lilies and daisies. Eccentricity is at the...

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