Can India’s Paytm become a global giant like Alipay?

Can Paytm become India's Ant Financial

Zomato had a resounding success with its IPO. This success will be very encouraging for the upcoming new-age tech companies. Paytm is one of the companies lined up to join the IPO euphoria. Paytm is the highest valued company amongst the Indian startups and shall command high premiums. The question is, what next for Paytm. The company has already achieved scale and is facing stiff competition. Will it be able to become as big as Ant financial? Let’s find out.

History of Paytm

Paytm was founded by Mr. Vijay Shekhar Sharma (VSS) in 2010; as a subsidiary of One97 Communications. VSS had been part of small startups like IndiaSite.net. He started One97 communications in the year 2000. In the early days, One97 focused on being a content platform. One97 shifted its focus to digital wallets called Paytm in 2010. Their digital wallet became an instant success because of the first-mover advantage and the cashback schemes. With their Android app, users could make payments of the exact amount. This app practically eliminated the need to carry a wallet or authenticate on various devices. As a result, Paytm became a familiar brand, thanks to its name which sounded similar to ATM.

Historic moments for Paytm

Paytm’s journey so far can be highlighted in three significant events. The first one was in its early days when Uber collaborated with Paytm for payments. Uber never wanted to accept cash payments. The number of cardholders in India was limited. By collaborating with a digital wallet like Paytm, payment was guaranteed for the rides. Customer acquisition for Paytm became easy by collaborating with a global giant.

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What is the superfood that will give Zomato, much-needed boost?

Zomato, India’s homegrown foodtech company, is planning to launch its IPO soon. The company has undergone a massive transformation in just over a decade. Zomato has had its fair share of push coming from its competitors. The company amidst its IPO plans; has a steep challenge of remaining relevant in the delivery context. Let us look at the story of Zomato and their possible options.

Initial Years

Deepinder Goyal, working at Bain and Company, had a struggle finding menus of restaurants. Every time he wanted to place an order, there was nothing handy he could refer to. This was in the late 2000s when the combination of the internet and smartphones was relatively new. Deepinder took it upon him and conducted a small experiment to see if people had a similar problem. 

Deepinder then clicked photos of menu cards and started sharing them with his colleagues. This was the inception of Foodiebay, launched jointly by Deepinder and Pankaj Chaddah. Foodiebay was eventually renamed to what we now know as Zomato.

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How Groww is helping Indians in Wealth creation?

The business model of Groww

April of 2021 witnessed unprecedented funding in the Indian startup ecosystem. In less than a week, six companies landed large sums of money. This funding round led to multiple companies identified as Unicorns. Groww was one of these companies which had a significant funding round. It is an online discount broker with a simple pricing model. Groww, a 4-year-old company is challenging established businesses to simplify the business model. Let’s look at what Groww has achieved so far and how they challenged the status quo.

Idea behind Groww

Udaan is a successful example of a business started by ex-Flipkart employees and is helping small businesses grow. Groww is yet another company that comes from ex-Flipkart employees. Lalit Keshre and Harsh Jain; both worked in the product management vertical at Flipkart. They both had prior experience in entrepreneurship. Their earlier ventures entrepreneur were not successful. But, their learnings would help them in their next venture. Neeraj Singh, a software engineer, and Ishan Bansal working in the growth team joined them. Together they formed a unit that had experience across various business functions.

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Why are Central banks rushing for Digital Currency?

Digital Dollar, Digital Euro, Digital Yuan
Plans behind China’s digital currency

Covid-19 has been the accelerator for digital transformation at many organizations. It has forced companies to relook at their business models. Fear of contagion has made handling physical cashless desirable. The central bank-issued currency notes have also come under the lens and might just get a digital makeover. China has launched its own digital currency called eYuan. Globally, there is a lot of innovation at work on the currency front. Do we need so much innovation in the presently stable form of currency? Is covid the only reason for the rush for digitizing currency notes? Let us find out.

History of Currency

Before we jump into recent innovations, let us look at a bit of the history of currency. The history of exchanges and trades dates back to around 9000 BC. Products or services were exchanged for other products or services under the barter system. The barter system was first recorded in Egypt. In 1100 BC, the Chinese invented casts of bronze, a medium for exchanging goods. This was progress from the existing barter system.

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Transferwise – How an ancient system helped disrupt new age business

Wise Business strategy

Transferwise has been in the news a lot these days. They are becoming Wise; I meant they are renaming their company as Wise. (Further, will use Transferwise or Wise alternatively to address the same company). They are also planning to come up with their IPOs. Founders of the company have launched their investment fund (not a VC fund). Wise has been admired and been talked about a lot. After all, their business has been a disruptor of many existing businesses. As the name suggests, Wise is in the money transfer business, which many companies do. How exactly did transferwise make an impact globally with their decade-old business? Let us find out.

Pre Transferwise era

Kristo Käärmann, an Estonian, was working as a management consultant at Deloitte. He had to pay back his mortgage in Estonia and had to transfer money from Britain to Estonia. He had the means to transfer funds. However, almost all means were expensive. Conversion from pound to euro and transfer fee took away 5% of the total amount. If you had to transfer 100000, 5% of this amount which is 5,000 bucks, would be deducted as transfer fees. This pinched Käärmann. He did some research and found out that many people face a similar problem. During remittances to the home nation, a good part of the transfer amount was taken away by the financial institutions. Since there is no single currency globally, the conversion is inevitable, and so are the charges.

Käärmann with Taavet Hinrikus (another Estonian), who was the first employee of Skype, decided to address this problem through their venture Transferwise. They decided to overhaul the cross-border transfer industry. The money transfer industry was about to witness disruption.

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