PricePanda’s online price comparison platform lets you get the best deals from popular shops.

PricePanda

PricePandaIndian ecommerce industry is shining with 1000’s of ecommerce sites popping up around the country the options for the buyer  is immense. Indian e-commerce sector will become a 504-billion rupees industry in the next 3 years. More and more Indian retail companies are going online to lure the customers available online. According to a recent report published by McKinsey & Co, there will be more than 500 million internet users in India by 2015, and a significant proportion of that will carry out online transactions on a regular basis.

With the emergence of new internet-based retailers, finding the right deal is a time consuming process for theconsumers in the internet world. Searching a number of online stores one-by-one and comparing prices online could be a tiresome and time-consuming task.

PricePanda which recently launched in India tries to solve this growing problem for the online consumers with the launch of its site PricePanda in India. It brings in a host of convenience, time saving and cost benefits to the online shoppers. It is a price comparison engine, which currently offers prices for mobile phones, computers ,cameras, clothing, accessories & shoes  is trying to solve this problem. Customers can compare different deals for the requested products in order to make informed purchasing decisions. Clicking on a deal will redirect the user to the merchant’s online shop where the product can be ordered.

Pricepanda’s platform empowers ecommerce businesses with helping them to convert their offerings into sales.It helps find the most affordable deals in a chosen product segment from a number of online stores, ensuring the best cost saving deals for online shoppers. Moreover, it also brings several other benefits that can greatly enhance the online shopping experience of the online buyers.

PricePanda enables shoppers to find and compare more than 70,000 products from over 100 categories such as computers, software, health and beauty, home appliances, gaming, music and movies. Apart from India, the other eight countries include Argentina, Colombia, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mexico , Singapore, Thailand and the Philippines.

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Ixigo.com Launches Mixigo – An Offline Community Initiative for Travelers

ixigoTravel search engine ixigo.com has launched a unique community initiative “mixigo” – an offline mixer for travelers to network and share their travel experiences. The first mixigo was held in Gurgaon at the ixigo office on 26th July 2013, where travel enthusiasts from all walks of life came together to attend the session on ‘How to travel abroad on a shoestring budget’ by Ansoo Gupta, a renowned travel expert and media professional.

mixigo is an initiative by ixigo to get like-minded travel enthusiasts together to discuss and benefit from each other’s experiences and knowledge in a conducive environment. “ixigo’s vision is to simplify the lives of travelers. We believe that the most trustworthy travel information comes from the experience of other travelers,” said Aloke Bajpai, CEO and Co-founder at ixigo. “mixigo is an effort in this direction and will serve as a platform for travelers to mix, connect and inspire each other to discover great places, explore new destinations and travel smart.”

The first session of mixigo focused on ‘how to plan international holidays on a shoestring budget’ and saw active participation from more than 30 participants who attended the session and a few others who joined the conversation over video hangouts. The discussion was followed by an interactive session where people shared their desires to travel to different places and talked about the challenges, learnings and enrichment travel has brought to their lives.

After witnessing an overwhelming response to first mixigo, ixigo plans to take mixigo to travellers across India through mixigo sessions in more cities and plans to get more travel experts onboard its fast growing community initiative. In addition to this, thousands of travelers have already contributed photos, comments, answers and tips to ixigo’s trip planner platform.

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TripAdvisor Acquires GateGuru, A Leading Mobile Resource For Flight And Airport Information

tripadvisorRecently online travel portal TripAdvisor, Inc. acquired GateGuru , a leading mobile resource for flight and airport information around the world. Built on a mix of user-generated content and information from the airports, flyers can view detailed maps and insights on stores, restaurants, amenities and gate locations.  Combined with weather forecasts, estimated security wait times and real-time flight status information, the award-winning app aims to take the stress out of flying.

Commenting on the acquisition, Steve Kaufer, co-founder and CEO TripAdvisor, Inc. said,”Flying is often an essential part of a trip and we have continually developed our suite of flights products, from the pricing and availability search on TripAdvisor, to our award-winning SeatGuru.com, with seat maps and more. GateGuru nicely complements our existing flights products and we look forward to working with the GateGuru team as they continue to manage the GateGuru app and add great functionality to the TripAdvisor mobile experience.”

Post the acquisition, the GateGuru team will continue to operate out of New York City, and report to Bryan Saltzburg, General Manager New Initiatives and leader of the TripAdvisor Flights product and SeatGuru brand.

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Travel Search Engine Wego.com Raises Funding of $17 Million

wegoLeading travel search engine Wego.com has secured $17 million in growth capital through the completion of a Series C Preferred Share Offering. The investment round was led by Crescent Point with contributions from Victoria Capital and existing shareholder Tiger Global.  This brings Wego’s total capital raised to US$36 million.

A pioneer in the travel metasearch space across the Asia-Pacific region from its base in Singapore, Wego is now active in 52 markets and 30 languages globally with a particularly large user base in the fast developing markets of Indonesia, India, Southeast Asia and the Middle East. Wego generates more than US$10 million per day of potential bookings for their travel partners and has experienced rapid growth in recent years.

“We’re delighted to welcome Crescent Point and Victoria Capital as new investors. We also wish to thank Tiger Global for being great partners and for their renewed support,” said Ross Veitch and Craig Hewett, Wego Co-Founders.

The company plans to utilize the additional capital to step up investment in product and innovation, grow the team with top talent at all levels, scale marketing to grow Wego into a leading online travel brand and an ever more valuable source of customers for Wego’s hundreds of travel industry partners. Simultaneous to the closing of this round, Paul Bassat from Victoria Capital and a representative of Crescent Point have joined Wego’s board of directors.

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Microsoft Unveils Ad-free Version of Bing For Schools

microsoftYesterday Microsoft announced that it would offer an advertising-free version of its Bing search engine for schools, which also includes extra privacy and filtering of adult content.

Commenting on this, Microsoft’s Matt Wallaert said,”Bing For Schools will offer schools in the US the option to tailor the Bing experience for (elementary and secondary) students by removing all advertisements from search results, enhancing privacy protections and the filtering of adult content, and adding specialized learning features to enhance digital literacy. The program is completely voluntary: schools have the choice of participating or keeping the normal Bing experience. For those that opt-in, Bing will enable the experience across all searches from within the school’s network on Bing.com, without any need for special software.”

He further added that while Bing already offers the ability to filter out adult content, the new services will automatically default to the strict setting and remove kids ability to change it.

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Google Launches Product Listing Ads in India

googleYesterday search engine giant Google launched a new ad format ‘Product Listing Ads’ in India. This new ad format will to provide users information like images, price and brands of products, which will help people shop better both online and offline.

Product Listing Ads are search ads that include richer product information, such as product image, price, and merchant name, without requiring additional keywords or ad text. Whenever a user enters a search query relevant to an item in your Google Merchant Center account, Google will automatically show the most relevant products along with the associated image, price and product name.
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As per an official statement, Product Listing Ads will appear on shopping-related queries on Google.co.in. This feature will initially be placed on the right-hand side of the search results page above text ads, and it will be labeled as ‘sponsored’.

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IndiaMART Introduces SmartSearch, a New Feature for B2B Buyers

indiamartOnline B2B marketplace IndiaMART has introduced SmartSearch, a new feature that enables buyers search for suppliers in a fast and effective manner. This new feature is available on both IndiaMART search and Directory pages.

The SmartSearch feature aims to enable buyers to search for relevant supplier products and services within 100kms of their preferred location. With this IndiaMART aims to help businesses in discovering the right Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) located even at the remotest of location and assist them in connecting with the company.

Commenting on the new SmartSearch feature, Mr. Dinesh Agarwal, Founder & CEO, IndaMART.com said, “Internal research has shown that Indian B2B buyers prefer to transact first in the near vicinity of their premises and then expanding outwards as it saves logistical costs. One of the primary functions of a directory is to provide fast and relevant results. No one has the time to go through multiple pages of supplier data to find out who fits their location preference and hence the need for SmartSearch.”

If a person is looking for ‘agricultural equipment’ from Jamnagar in Gujarat, he will get a result showing businesses from Jamnagar and Rajkot, which falls within the 100 km radius. In addition it also highlights the top 25 cities with the most suppliers. The tool is extremely helpful in situations where no supplier is available within your desired location because in such cases it shares the nearest options. This could help buyers look for dense supplier geographies which could further help in better prices (due to greater competition).

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Zomato.com Receives INR 55 Crore Investment From Info Edge (India) Ltd

zomatoOnline food and nightlife guide Zomato has received a further investment of INR 55 Crore from Info Edge (India) Ltd. Prior to this round Info Edge had invested INR 31 Crore in Zomato over three rounds. As per the BSE filing, the fresh investment has been made through ordinary shares of Zomato Media Pvt. Ltd.

Commenting on this Info Edge Founder & Executive Vice Chairman Sanjeev Bikhchandani said,”Zomato is fast emerging as one of the finest Indian consumer internet businesses. It has a great team, a great brand, a super user experience, a dominant market share, an excellent revenue scale up with a known path to profit and a global opportunity. When the founders invited us to invest in the next round we were delighted to grab the opportunity. We are excited to partner with Zomato to build up the company further.”

Zomato will be utilizing the investment to strengthen its market share in its existing markets while continuing to scale sales operations in its dominant markets – India and UAE. Besides this Zomato is also planning an entry into the Philippines and South Africa in the next few months.

Deepinder Goyal, Founder & CEO of Zomato said, “We plan to use these additional funds for product development, scaling up our sales team in various locations, and further international expansion. India is already a profitable business for us, and our UAE business is very close to breaking even. Info Edge has been a great partner for us – we are excited about deepening this relationship with an aim to build a global internet business out of India.”

Founded in 2008, Zomato currently operates in 5 countries: India, United Kingdom, UAE, Sri Lanka, and Qatar with plans for further international expansion. In India, the operations span 13 cities. The website and mobile app provide in-depth information (menu, contact details, pictures, directions, ratings and reviews) for over 75,000 restaurants across 19 cities in 5 countries.

Zomato has a dominant traffic share in India with an estimated 70% traffic share. Its mobile app is one of the most popular apps in India with over a million downloads across different platforms. More than 50% of Zomato’s traffic comes from its app.

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Google India Announces Mapathon 2013

google mapsWith an aim to create better maps for India, Google India has announced a mapping competition: Mapathon 2013.

Mapathon 2013 — which starts on February 12 and culminates on March 25, 2013 — is an India-wide   mapping contest open to just about anybody who lives in India. The Google blog stated,” We’re inviting Google Maps users from all over the country to help us create better maps for India by adding knowledge of their neighborhoods through Google Map Maker. And there’s something in it for everyone! The top 1000 mappers in India stand a chance to win Android tablets, smartphones, gift vouchers and Google merchandise.”

Google Map Maker, first conceptualized in India, is an easy-to-use tool that allows users to add more detail to Google Maps through a few simple clicks. Using Google Map Maker, users can select a specific area on Google Maps and add new information based on their own local knowledge or by referencing the satellite imagery on Google Maps.  With just another click, users can save and submit their input — and once the submitted edit has been verified, the new information will be added to Google Maps.

For registrations, users can visit this link.

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Google Rolls Out Google+ Hangouts For Gmail Users In India

googleGoogle has officially rolled out Google+ Hangouts for all Gmail users in India. The official Google blog stated,” Over the last few months, we’ve been rolling out updates to Google+ Hangouts to make it easy for you to connect with friends and family no matter where you are.  Today we’re excited to bring Hangouts to all of our Gmail users in India.”

Google+ Hangouts will allow Gmail users to video chat with up to 9 people at once, after they’ve upgraded to Google+. Apart from this, with Hangouts, users can watch YouTube videos with friends, collaborate on Google Docs, or play games by adding apps from the menu on the left.  In case of a slow connection, users can opt for an ultra low bandwidth mode to keep the conversation going.

To activate Hangouts, one has to just click on the hangout button at the top of the chat list in Gmail. Users can also schedule a hangout with Google Calendar, and use the Google+ app for Android and iOS to hang out while on the go.

 

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