Bengaluru-based online lending platform Qbera has raised a $3 million funding round led by Mumbai-based investor E-City Ventures which is a part of the Indian conglomerate Essel Group. The startup plans to utilise the recently raised funds towards ramping up its technology and analytics capabilities. It also plans to expand its team across functions, scale its business and expand its geographical reach to more parts of the country.
Delhi-based women community platform SHEROES has raised an undisclosed amount of funding from Leo Capital, and Facebook executive Anand Chandrasekaran. The startup will utilise the fresh funds to strengthen its vernacular reach, and build more value for its members.
Data is the new oil and a driver of growth and change. Indeed, India is a supposed to become data rich before becoming economically rich. This digital growth is being pushed by large foreign digital companies. Important sectors such as e-commerce, social media, digital entertainment, online communication, and information and communication technology (ICT) hardware in India are predominantly served by foreign companies, or domestic companies funded by foreign capital. These foreign service providers are free to process the personal data of millions of Indians within their own shores. The advancement of digital tools and technology in areas such as artificial intelligence (AI), has enabled them to monitor and profile user behaviour, preferences and even daily routines, granting them the potential power to influence their decisions through targeted communications. Recognising the gravity of the issue, the Srikrishna committee in its draft data protection bill has rightly observed that the freedom to share personal data in the digital economy works selectively in the interests of certain countries that have been early movers. However, it remains to be seen whether the bill will backfire with respect to the potential threat of data colonialism.
Bengaluru-based Indian regional language social platform ShareChat has raised close to $100 million (Rs.720 crore) in a funding round that will boost its valuation to $460 million (Rs.3,332 crore). This is a 7x increase to its last valuation when the company raised $18.2 million in Series B funding round from Xiaomi Singapore and its sister company Shunwei Capital at a valuation of $67 million (Rs.431 crore) in January 2018. The company is reportedly looking to go deeper into micro-markets, including the Northeast region before it begins working on monetising its service next year through advertising, influencer marketing, and in-app purchases.
TVS Logistics Services Ltd (TVSLSL) has picked up 51 per cent stake in White Data Systems India Pvt Ltd (WDSI), a subsidiary of the Rs.329-billion Murugappa Group’s financial services firm Cholamandalam Investment and Finance Company Ltd (Chola). TVSLSL would invest around Rs.422 million for 51 per cent equity stake directly in WDSI.
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