A unit of Reliance Industries Ltd is about to buy a majority stake in artificial intelligence-primarily based conversational platform Haptik as the Mukesh Ambani-led conglomerate appears to hold its latest spree of snapping up technology startups. Reliance Jio Digital Services Pvt. Ltd will completely gather Mumbai- and San Francisco-based NC totally, humans familiar with the development informed TechCircle on the condition of anonymity. However, a third character said that the transaction could be more of a strategic investment than an outright acquisition. This individual pegged the deal price at $100 million (Rs 693 crore at current trade quotes) but did now not tricky on the dimensions of the stake worried.
As part of the deal, Times Internet, currently Haptic’s majority stakeholder, will be exiting its funding. Times Internet is the digital commercial enterprise arm of media conglomerate Bennett, Coleman and Co Ltd (BCCL). A legit announcement about the deal is expected within the coming weeks. The other human beings mentioned above said that Reliance Jio had struck a formal business switch agreement with Haptik earlier this month. They delivered that the proposed transaction could be through manner of a slump sale. A stoop sale refers to a transaction in which an entity is sold for a lump sum quantity without considering the person values of the property or liabilities.
Reliance Jio may want to doubtlessly embed Haptik’s virtual assistant throughout its virtual platforms, including music streaming service JioSaavn apart from messaging, video, and different offerings that complement its cellular community. Incidentally, JioSaavn competes with Times Internet’s streaming app Gaana. Email queries sent to Reliance Jio as well as Haptik founders Aakrit Vaish and Swapan Rajdev did now not yield a reaction until the time of publishing this report.
Haptik changed based on Vaish (chief govt officer) and Rajdev (leader era officer) in 2013. The startup gives an AI-based chatbot that could help consumers interact with digital sellers and corporations through textual content and voice. Faptik’s answers help firms cope with customer service, consumer feedback, user engagement, and lead era. Haptik has built chatbots for corporation customers, including Samsung, KFC, P&G, Tata Group, Amazon Web Services, ICICI Bank, The Times of India, Viacom18, Dream11, Edelweiss Tokio, Club Mahindra, and IIFL.
In April 2016, Haptik raised an undisclosed amount from Times Internet in its Series B investment spherical, thereby imparting an exit to task capital firm Kalaari Capital. As a part of the deal, Haptik also shaped a partnership with Times Internet. Before founding Haptik, Vaish turned into heading the Indian operations of Flurry Inc—a cellular analytics, monetization, and commercials firm—which changed into obtained through Yahoo in July 2014. He additionally co-based and headed an actual estate platform for university students, which become received with the aid of CommonFloor in April 2014. Rajdev was a software engineer at Radius Intelligence Inc before putting in place Haptik. The former Accenture consultant is likewise the founding father of Zing! Apps that create web-based iOS programs.
Reliance Industries has been purchasing spree of past due, with the oil-to-telecom conglomerate shopping for majority stakes in at least five groups this year to emphasize digital aims. The investments are expected to complement the enterprise’s virtual trade initiatives except strengthening its logistics operations, catering to both commercial enterprise-to-enterprise and enterprise-to-purchaser segments.
In 2019, Reliance has up to now acquired majority stakes in hyperlocal logistics company Grab, software program firm C-Square, vernacular language services platform Reverie, welfare schemes platform EasyGov and software program services firm SankhyaSutra Labs Earlier this month, media reports said that Reliance turned into in talks to gather style discovery platform and market Find. However, a co-founder of the Google-subsidized organization issued a denial.