Standardization is a zero-sum game. There are clear winners. And modern history is littered with the carcasses of losers. Betamax was priced out by VHS, which came to dominate the home video VCR market for the next two decades. Microsoft’s bundling of Internet Explorer with its Windows operating systems put paid to Netscape Navigator’s growth … Read moreWhat are the android aspirations?
But that was another deliberate strategy Udaan’s founders picked up at Flipkart—fund aggressive growth through aggressive losses, in turn, funded via aggressive venture capital money raised at aggressive valuations. As Flipkart’s $20 billion acquisition by Walmart showed, it can sometimes work. What does the logistics claim? To be sure, Udaan started only in late 2016 … Read moreLearn to give the credit where it’s due
With solving students’ housing needs a relatively recent phenomenon, companies in the space are still trying out various business models to see which one works best. Stanza, for example, aggregates existing inventory in the market—hostels, paying guest (PG) or large residential spaces—and customizes each property to enforce its standards. Keeping the housekeeping services ready These … Read moreBuilding the OYO for student housing
While the list of VCs on the company’s cap table is long, there are three investors and funding rounds that made a big difference to the company’s fortunes. In 2011, Accel Partners put in $1 million. It was Accel’s first SaaS investment in India and was made when Freshdesk had only a few small customers, … Read moreFrom Freshdesk to Freshworks and beyond
Electric scooter manufacturer Ather’s offerings—which retail for between Rs 1,10,000-Rs 1,25,000 ($1,600-1,820)—are already considered too precious for the Indian masses. A comparative internal combustion engine (ICE) scooter, like the best-selling Honda Activa, for example, retails for much less: Rs 70,000 ($1,020). With popular mass-market ICE motorcycles such as the Hero Splendour retailing for an affordable … Read moreYou’re still using fire as your source of propulsion
Around 2008, Shailendra Singh, the then MD of Sequoia India opted against investing in online retailer Flipkart. Two years later, in 2010, John Greathouse, partner at Rincon Venture Partners, passed up a chance to back ride-hailing company Uber. Opportunities Missed Today, these two missed opportunities have a combined valuation north of $100 billion. Flipkart, valued … Read moreWhose bed is it anyway—India’s unfolding rental economy revolution
A July 2016 report by UK-based charity Privacy International stated: “In non-democratic and authoritarian systems, the power gained from the use of surveillance technologies can undermine democratic development and lead to serious human rights abuses. State agencies are also utilizing technologies used for surveillance for offensive and military purposes as well as espionage.” “Technological developments … Read moreIf you are a government and want to increase surveillance
Mankeekar believes empathy-inducing games need to be a part of education as they’re a superior learning tool. Today’s education system, he says, single-mindedly focuses on competition. It forgets privilege, which he calls ‘chance’. “Chance is a big part of life. Why were we born into our families, why are we working where we are, as … Read moreHow are billionaires making the complex calculations simple?
Krishni remembers a brief period many years ago when all the snacks in the house were store-bought. This was when packaged food was gaining popularity—indeed, for the average middle-class household, it was somewhat aspirational. “Things like potato or banana chips, chaklis and chivda, which we used to previously make at home, switched to being store-bought.” … Read moreThe first real ‘grown-up’ cooking experience was the simple act of washing
Not everyone, though, quite agrees with this narrative of conflict and fault lines in the Indian media. R. Jagannathan, editorial director of Swarajya, and an often vocal critic of the liberal media, says that, for one, the questioning of those in power “was always treated as an attack, and the only thing was that they … Read moreIt’s not going to be as polarised, say, five years down the line