India has always been quite a force when it comes to software solutions and start-ups and the appetite for technological advancements seen in the fields of machine learning and artificial intelligence remain high. There are many opportunities when it comes to healthcare, financial inclusion and sustainability. The Google for Startups Accelerator (GFSA) programme started in 2018 to support start-ups that are solving India-specific challenges. The idea is to help promising start-ups with mentorship and support from Google and industry experts. We interacted with a few homegrown start-ups that were a part of the GFSA programme and here’s what they have to say.
Ashwarya Garg, co-founder, Hypd
The start-up: Hypd is a creator-driven marketplace, aimed at bridging the gap between getting excited and buying.
Hear it from: Ashwarya Garg, co-founder, Hypd
Different from other marketplaces....
Hypd is a Shopify for creators, enabling creators to launch their own stores and turn them into marketplaces themselves. When you shop from a creator’s store, the profits/commissions of the transaction are directly shared with the creators. We are turning creators into mini-Amazon/ Nykaa/ Myntra, where they curate their content into a shoppable store, for their fans to directly buy from. So now you See It, Like It, Buy It; all from social media platforms where your favourite creators exist.
Lessons during the pandemic....
Digital adoption has increased at least 10 times in a year’s time. As a consumer, your shopping, dining, vacationing, lifestyle choices and preferences; are all a function and sum total of the content and creator you are watching now. The convenience of getting information delivered to you, in your hand, in under 30 seconds, has completely changed the game. The right choice of content has taken the place of our coach, mentors, teachers, evangelist, guardians and so on. This has increased the accessibility of opportunities and democratised the ‘right to win’ in a cut-throat competitive world. The relationship between content creators and their fans has become more cohesive and elevated to a demigod status. This has resulted in a redefined creator’s economy which is driving all the consumer habits from macro to micro to niche communities.
The consumers on Hypd....
People spending time on social media, who have a wallet share for online transactions, are the ones who are interacting with Hypd-enabled creators’ stores. The users spread from Gen Z to millenials, who are actively interacting with content in their day to day life. We have seen a healthy and at par mix of male to female ratio, concentrated largely from tier-I and tier-II cities; also, rapidly increasing from tier-III and tier-IV cities.
Help from Google via Start-ups Accelerator programme....
Google for Start-ups Accelerator has helped us research, ideate and iterate the right product through constant mentor whiteboarding and feedback during the programme. It has helped us validate the idea well by strategising on the GTM for focus groups, and core users to get to the right PMF. In addition to this, it has prepared our action plan for scalability with respect to security, servers, AI/ML automation, data rights and incorporating consumer feedback.
Akash Gupta, co-founder and CEO, Zypp Electric
The start-up: Zypp Electric is India’s leading D2C EV brand which helps last-mile delivery go electric, increase sales and revenue with doorstep delivery
Hear it from: Akash Gupta, co-founder and CEO, Zypp Electric
The idea for Zypp Electric....
When I was working with Airtel, MobiKwik (as marketing head), I constantly used to think that I want to work on something that will help in solving a larger problem for the world. Electric sustainable mobility emerged as one of the issues that people were facing on a daily basis in the form of so much vehicular pollution in our current means of mobility. So what struck me was that while people will continue to travel on a daily basis from one point to another, making the same last-mile mobility and delivery go electric could be a huge opportunity in itself. This idea or the identification of the opportunity led to the inception of Zypp Electric.
Service sectors currently handled....
We are currently the go-to partner for all major e-commerce and logistic players like Zomato, Swiggy, Amazon, Flipkart, Myntra, Zepto, Porter and BigBasket. Our goal is to encourage more fleets and delivery executives across the country to go electric, and to facilitate this, we are planning to deploy 1.5 lakh e-scooters in India by 2025. Furthermore, we are also bullishly expanding our presence across the country to reach Hyderabad, Mumbai, and Pune to address the growing demand. We are fully aligning our efforts to spearhead the transition of the logistic segment to EVs. We have floated our interest to collaborate with EV, OEMs, EV battery providers, and fintech firms to help us capitalise on this huge fuel to EV mobility shift.
Increase in the usage of electric vehicles....
The increase in the number of logistics and e-commerce companies committing to go electric is because of the added push from the authorities and policy makers. The government wants all logistics and aggregators to go 100 per cent electric by 2025 will result in growth of EVs in India. Also, all these companies have their own ESG targets which are pushing them to adopt sustainable means.
Zypp has already completed over five million EV backed deliveries for its partners. Owing to this record, we are increasing our inventory to meet this increase in demands. Until last year, we were adding 500 new EVs to our fleet every month, but now we’ve decided to quadruple the number of vehicles to 2,000 every month from next quarter.
Precautions being taken....
The kind of incidents that have occurred because of battery malfunction is unfortunate and we believe that the reason behind such incidents can only be owed to battery packing materials and manufacturers not using smart BMS. The type of nickel stripes and coolant used, and the amount of space provided in the packaging should all be appropriate enough to standardise the quality.
At Zypp, we use the LFP chemistry battery, which stands for lithium ferro phosphate chemistry, and this makes our batteries stronger and safer. We only work with the LFP fleet that does take more space but at the same time is robust and safe. In addition to that, we also perform regular battery checks, and our IoTs alerts drivers when it’s time to charge and change the batteries.
Nidhi Jain, CEO, KareXpert Technologies
The start-up: A fully integrated hospital in the Cloud.
Hear it from: Nidhi Jain, CEO, KareXpert Technologies
How is it different from other third-parties that offer solutions to hospitals....
We aim to connect 100,000 hospitals. Our integrated cloud-based platform brings advanced HIMS, EMR/EHR, LIMS, RIS/PACS, Pharmacy, Connected Ambulance, Advanced BI, MIS, e-Claim, Telemedicine, Inventory and SCM, Queue Management, Counseling, and Branded Mobile Apps, all as pre-integrated stack.
This brings digital transformation for the hospital with branded mobile apps using the Patient First approach. Advanced software technology is web scale, fully secured and certified by PwC. Our commercial model is SaaS-based at a low monthly fee where we become true partners to the hospital at every step, making it most affordable commercially.
Help from Google for Start-ups Accelerator programme....
Google for Start-ups Accelerator programme has helped us in different facets of our business, be it marketing, dev-ops, or implementation. GFS enabled us to widen our reach and got us connected with industry leaders, who guided us through the bottlenecks and best practices.
After being selected as one of the start-ups in the GFS accelerator programme, we got 100K worth of Cloud credits that fast-tracked the cloud adoption among healthcare providers.
With the help of GFS we were able to achieve quality lead generation at a lower CPC which helped us to save our monthly spending. Their consultancy in UI-UX helped us in designing a user friendly interface.
Among all the benefits that we were able to accrue in this programme, the opportunity to connect with the industry leaders and fellow start-ups (all the while sharing hurdles with them) has been the top one.
I view it as an important role for Google to be local, and engage in every country with the best interest of the country too...we are deeply committed to engaging in every country locally, complying with local laws — Google CEO Sundar Pichai said last year
Nikhil Baheti, co-founder, product and analytics, Aayu
The start-up: Digital touchpoint for affordable primary diagnosis and quick medicine delivery
Hear it from: Nikhil Baheti, co-founder, product and analytics, Aayu
The idea behind Aayu....
It was a result of personal healthcare experiences of the founders and extensive research done across 800 towns and cities to solve the healthcare gaps for the country that culminated into the foundation of Aayu. The central piece to Aayu has been enabling chemist stores, who are the pillars of providing healthcare services to the residents of their neighbourhoods. By equipping these chemists with the full tech-stack and relevant offerings, they are able to grow their own business and serve their locality effectively in more dimensions than just medicine sales.
We’ve connected over 3.5 million households with 40,000 chemist stores and 5,000-plus doctors, and managed over three million medicine orders through these chemist stores to customers. Apart from being incubated in GFSA, Aayu has won the Startup India WhatsApp Grand Challenge.
Aayu has served over 1,000-plus towns and cities with its speedy medicine delivery through local chemist stores and its proprietary marketplace tele-consultation model. This makes it an easily scalable and highly cost-effective model for Bharat. We have grown organically to almost 60 per cent of our currently serviced locations. We’re strengthening our chemist store network in these cities due to rising demand and will be expanding to more geographies towards the end of the year.
Visham Sikand, founder and managing director, Goals101
The start-up: Goals101 is a Transaction Behavioural Intelligence (TBI) company that accelerates business growth for banks with the use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML)
Hear it from: Visham Sikand, founder and managing director, Goals101
Help from Google....
We have got help from Google experts in diverse areas like analytics, Cloud, marketing and code automation. The Google team is also helping us with the immigration of the environment for one of the large bank clients with the help of a Google certified vendor.
Individualised experience for customers....
Goals101 offers personalised experience to the bank’s customers by analysing billions of data points on spend patterns of the customers thus giving them delightful experiences using our proprietary platform Alpha. Customers get relevant and timely communication about brands and categories of interest, offers, recommendations - all personalised at an individual customer level and not generic ones across multiple touch points.
Post-pandemic interest in AL....
Yes, pandemic has accelerated the adoption of AL and we at Goals101 are seeing rising demand from both India and abroad across different client segments. Currently Goals101 is doing implementation for one of the largest banks in the Middle East and one of the well-known private banks in India as well. Our AI/ML driven approach has helped clients in increasing efficiency, reducing cost and reducing time to connect with customers and deliver delightful experiences.