Hike no more; Second chances elsewhere

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Good morning!


Since its launch in 2012, Hike has reinvented itself several times. 


The app, which began as a messaging app and once topped Android and iOS’ free apps’ list, later made available other offerings such as news, games, chat stickers, offline chat, and even payments. 


Now Hike is prioritising its other social products and ending what many saw as a promising run for the app.


Two weeks ago, Hike Founder and CEO Kavin Bharti Mittal tweeted that the company will shut down StickerChat and double down on products such as Vibe and Rush. 


As of Monday, the Hike app is off of Google Play Store, as well as Apple's App Store.


What does this mean for Hike users and fans? The company, which will remain in the social space, is directing its users to its other products such as Vibe by Hike — an approval-only community; Rush by Hike — a gaming service, and; Stickers by Hike, among others. 

In other news, Nazara Technologies, backed by billionaire-investor Rakesh Jhunjhunwala, has filed for an IPO — for the second time. 


The Mumbai-based gaming company had earlier failed to launch the issue in 2018 despite getting approvals from market regulator SEBI. 


Nazara is India's first gaming startup to file a Draft Red Herring Prospectus (DRHP) with the SEBI. The public issue is a complete offer for sale of 49,65,476 equity shares by promoters and investors, as per regulatory filings.


This, we hope, is only the beginning of what many experts believe will be the year of Indian tech IPOs, with the likes of Zomato, Nykaa, Delhivery, and PolicyBazaar expected to go public in 2021.



The Interview 

When Meena Ganesh set up Portea Medical in 2013, it was because she had to take care of her father's healthcare needs beyond the hospital. Today, the startup has grown to become India's largest and fastest home healthcare company, completing 3.5 million patient visits in 21 cities. 


Here are some key takeaways from the interview:


Providing healthcare using technologyFacilitating health management amid COVID-19Home isolation remote managing programmeStrategies to raise money in the healthtech sectorThe importance of having a co-founder



Startup Spotlight

Bollywood actor Shreyas Talpade's startup Nine Rasa aims to promote talent in theatre and performing arts


One of the first places to close due to the coronavirus-induced lockdown were theatres and public places, economically hitting performing artists. Seeing their dire circumstances, Bollywood actor Shreyas Talpade announced the launch of his OTT startup Nine Rasa, exclusively for theatrical and stage performances. Read more.

Image Credit: Maanoj Jain Photography



Editor’s Pick: Budget 2021 

Here's what the Indian startup ecosystem is hoping for in Budget 2021


The Union Ministry of Finance is all set to roll out additional measures in Union Budget on February 1 to revive the slowing economy, post the Rs 20 lakh crore COVID-19 relief package announced in May 2020. Here’s what business leaders, entrepreneurs, investors, and other stakeholders from the Indian startup ecosystem expect from the Indian government. Read more.

Image Credits:YS Design Team



News & Updates

Fintech startup BharatPe has raised Rs 90 crore of venture debt by Alteria Capital and Rs 49 crore from ICICI bank, making it one of the largest debt cheques for an Indian startup till date.


Softbank Group-backed messaging service Hike, which had once been valued at over $1 billion, has been taken off app stores in India.


Rakesh Jhunjhunwala-backed Nazara Technologies became India's first gaming company to go public, listing for the IPO in its second attempt.


Health and fitness startup Curefit announced that it has acquired California-based digital fitness company Onyx for an undisclosed amount.


CabDost, the startup that helps gig economy workers in planning their finances, has merged with neobank Dvara Money which caters to the blue-collar workforce.



Before you go, stay inspired with… 

“Resolutions don’t always have to start with a new year. If we believe in something, we can make a resolution right now.”

— Raghav Joshi, CEO, Rebel Foods



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