EdCast Acquires Sales Training App WAGmob

WAGmob, a sales training app has been acquired by EdCast. The amount of the deal has not been disclosed.

It is a Microsoft Venture’s alumni who has their India operations out of Indore. WAGmob is used by over 100,000 sales people and fortune 500 companies.

Kalpit Jain, Co-founder & CEO of Sales-University, said, “EdCast is leading the new category of Knowledge Network for enterprises across industry verticals and job functions.  We are thrilled to be part of this fast growing market leader in an exciting space that can help the digital transformation of enterprises worldwide. Microsoft Ventures have been an invaluable partner in scaling our growth through its Azure’s clod and partner ecosystem. We scaled flawlessly and delivered training to hundreds of thousands of sellers via the Azure cloud.”

Creator of the app, Sales-University, based in Seattle was founded in 2011 by former Microsoft engineers and funded by prominent angel investors and grew out of Microsoft Venture’s in 2015.

SoftBank’s Nikesh Arora Receives A Pay Package Of $73M For 2016

President and COO of SoftBank Group, Nikesh Arora received a pay package of $73 million during the company’s latest fiscal year, which makes him one of the top paid executives in the world for the second year in a row. [source]

According to a proxy issued by the company, the compensation includes 1.56 billion yen paid by other SoftBank units.

Arora who earlier worked with Google, joined SoftBank in September 2014, as its vice-chairman and CEO of SB Group US and in May 2015, he was promoted and given the ‘president’ title. SoftBank founder & CEO Masayoshi Son also hinted that Arora might be his successor.

Since Arora’s joining, the Tokyo-based company’s shares have fallen by 3.7% in Tokyo trading.

Earlier, a group of SoftBank investors had asked for a probe into Nikesh Arora for alleged conflict of interest and poor performance.


IIM-A’s Threat Letter To Flipkart: Pay For Entire 7 Months Of Forced Unemployment

We had earlier reported that IIM-A has written a letter to Flipkart and asked to either higher the compensation amount or shorten the delay in joining dates, after Flipkart deferred the joining dates by 6 months.

Here is the context of the letter which was sent to Flipkart by IIM-A. The letter was first accessed and published by Economic Times.

From: IIM A chairperson
To: Binny Bansal and Nitin Seth CC: Flipkart directors, placement head and placecom representatives of all colleges Subject: 7 months delay in joining of management trainees at Flipkart

Dear Binny and Nitin,
It really saddened me to read an email (please see below) sent by Flipkart campus team on Friday night. You had earlier promised to give joining in July to our students but now it has been delayed till December 2016. Let me assure you that not only students of IIM-A but all the other students from the different campuses are in shock to see such a mail from a well established name like Flipkart.

This sudden decision will bring below changes:

1. A strong brand attracts the best of talent on any campus, anywhere in the world. Most of the students had chosen Flipkart over other well reputed recruiters on campus because of the strength of the brand Flipkart. Your decision to defer the date of joining, comes as it does so close to the earlier promised date of July 2016, is sure to make this talent pool regret their well thought out decision.

Talented students fresh out of campus, on the eve of starting successful careers, feel cheated out of multiple opportunities that the campus had to offer, through no fault of their own, just because they chose Flipkart.

With campus perception of recruiters trickling down from one batch to the next, this can significantly hurt the brand Flipkart on campus during subsequent rounds of campus hiring in the years to come.

2.With the need to service heavy educational loans that most of the students have taken, it stands to reason that the Flipkart’s decision of deferring joining by seven months puts a lot of personal finances (and by extension careers) in jeopardy and is bound to cause a lot of duress for the students and their families. The amount of 1.5 lakhs offered as joining bonus hardly qualifies as compensation for seven months of forced unemployment.

3.Future engagement of Flipkart with b-school campuses is bound to get affected as a relationship based on mistrust and lack of transparency can never be mutually beneficial.

While we understand that restructuring calls for tough decisions in an organisation, the matter of campus hiring could have been handled much better with campuses forewarned well in advance and engaged as partners in this decision making. Rude shocks due to unilateral decision making does little to help strengthen relationships with the campus.

All of these points only summarise that this decision is going to impact Flipkart, b-schools and most importantly talented students and their families in a very negative manner.

Hence all placement heads and placement committees of all colleges have decided to come forward in support of our students and would like to have a common conference call with you so that we can find a more amicable solution. We request you to consider the following options:

1. An undertaking signed by the CEO guaranteeing that every one of these students will be absorbed when the date of joining is finalised no later than December

2. Either the period of deferment needs to be scaled down or the quantum of compensation for deferment needs to be ramped up (Rs 1.5 lakh for a period of seven months is, to put it mildly, utterly unacceptable) to reflect x% of package.

3. The payment of the compensation shall commence on a monthly basis starting July and not as a lump sum amount as joining bonus or arrears.
As previously mentioned, we would appreciate a speedy response from your side regarding scheduling a conference call in the next couple of days, where all the relevant stakeholders (Flipkart management, placement chairpersons of the campuses, Placecom representatives from the campuses, representatives from Flipkart new joinees) can engage to reach a mutually acceptable solution.

We hope that working together, we can keep the matter from escalating to a wider audience. Our only objective is to protect the careers of our students.

Flipkart has assured that all the students will be recruited but no extra compensation will be given as asked by the institute. But all IIMs and IITs are now cautious and also trying to bring a solution for the students and as well as remove Flipkart from the Day 1 slot.

What’s your take on this matter?

Flipkart May Lose The Day 1 Slot In IITs’ Campus Placements

After receiving a strong worded letter from IIM-A, IITs may now remove Flipkart from the Day One list of the campus placement programs.

The All-IITs Placement Committee which comprises of all the placement cell heads across all IITs, will meet soon and reach a consensus regarding the Flipkart issue.

The companies usually prefer the day 1 slot so as to pick the best out of the lot. Flipkart was so far given the day 1 slot in almost all the IITs, except a few.

After the letter from IIM-A, IIT-B  is also planning to send out a similar email to Flipkart, asking them to reduce the deferment period or else increase the compensation amount.

However, Flipkart has assured that the trainees will be onboard by December 2016, after the entire restructuring process is completed. With the intensifying pressure on the e-commerce player to reduce its cash burn, the skepticisim and the concerns are inevitable.


Train Ticket Not Confirmed? Fly With Air India

Train passengers who does now have a confirmed ticket, can now get Air India flight tickets at the fare that will be similar to AC first class fares of trains.

Air India has partnered with IRCTC, which will sell the tickets. This move aims to give a boost to Air India’s sales.

If they do not get a confirmed ticket, the passengers will be given an option to book Air India tickets within the next 24 hours.

The AC first class passengers will be charged with the same fare while AC II passengers will be charged AC II fares plus Rs 1,500.


ClearTax Raises $2 million From Sequoia Capital And Paypal Co-founder Peter Thiel’s Founders Fund

ClearTax has raised $2 million in series A round from venture capital firms Sequoia Capital India, and Paypal co-founder Peter Thiel’s Founders Fund Angel.

The Bangalore based startup had recently raised its seed round of $1.3 million from a clutch of investors. PayPal Co-founder Max Levchin along with Scott & Cyan Banister, WhatsApp’s Business Head Neeraj Arora, AngelList Founder & CEO Naval Ravikant, Dropbox VP Ruchi Sanghvi, Y Combinator alum Sumon Sadhu and Flexport’s Founder & CEO Ryan Petersen, led the round.

The fresh funds will help the company to launch a new product that will help ClearTax users to save tax by making investments. It also plans to expand its team which currently comprises of 95 members and add about 200 more in the next six months.


Zomato’s Losses Shoots Up To Rs 492.3 Crore In FY16; Revenue Doubles

Gurgaon based Zomato’s losses have shot up to Rs 492.3 crore for the financial which year ended in March 31, 2016, according to the company’s lead investor InfoEdge. In the previous year, the company witnessed a loss of Rs 136 crore.

But, the company attained operating revenues of Rs 184.97 crore which increased from Rs 96.7 crore in the previous year.

Zomato had earlier claimed that it has achieved operational break even in six countries including India, the UAE, Lebanon, Qatar, the Philippines and Indonesia.

The online restaurant discovery platform has been investing in delivery services with the intent to expand and overcome the tough competition in the food tech segment. But, recently its valuation had been marked down at $500 million by HSBC which was strongly disagreed by InfoEdge and Zomato.

Clarifying the mark down, Deepinder Goyal had stated,

We already are profitable in the order business at a unit economics level, and the overall online ordering business will hit profitability when we get to an average of 40,000 orders a day. We should get there in the next 3-6 months. Also, there isn’t any food delivery company in the world which owns its last mile logistics fleet, operates at scale, and is profitable.