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daily roundup (Jan 17, 2022)



DeHaat completes third acquisition with Helicrofter, expands footprints in Western India

DeHaat, the technology-based platform offering end-to-end agricultural services to farmers in India, on Monday announced its acquisition of Maharashtra-based B2B agri-input marketplace startup, Helicrofter

DeHaat’s Co-founder and CEO Shashank Kumar confirmed that with the integration of Helicrofter, encompassing 2,000+ agri-input retailers and 30 sellers across Maharashtra, DeHaat has now added another major Indian agricultural belt to their already expansive geographical footprint.

Currently DeHaat serves over 700,000 farmers across Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Jharkhand, West Bengal, Odisha, Madhya Pradesh, and Rajasthan. The addition of Helicrofter to their roster comes in line with the overarching goal of geographical expansion, as it marks DeHaat’s entry into Maharashtra.

Founded in 2020 by Siddhartha Choudhary, Helicrofter is a farm input ecommerce platform designed to do away with supply chain inefficiencies in the rural ecosystem. Despite the pandemic, Helicrofter has been generating revenue since the very first month of its inception and has achieved annual revenue in excess of Rs 50 crore.  

G.O.A.T brand forays into women’s fast fashion by acquiring The Label Life

Building on their portfolio of D2C brands across categories, G.O.A.T Brand Labs has now acquired 90 percent stake in The Label Life, a women’s fashion and lifestyle brand styled by Sussanne Khan, Malaika Arora and Bipasha Basu. 

Founded by Preeta Sukhtankar, along with Yashika Punjabee and Sonam Shah, The Label Life caters to the lifestyle savvy 25 years+ working women for all her fashion and lifestyle needs. The brand is popular in India and the middle-east markets and is available through its website, portals such as Myntra, Nykaa, Namshi (UAE) and a standalone store in Kolkata.

Since its launch six years ago, the brand has built a base of over 1.2 million customers and followers. The Label Life is G.O.A.T Brand Labs’ first acquisition in the women’s westernwear space. The plan is to add multiple brands in this segment. 

The brand currently sells across categories like apparel, accessories, footwear and home. The plans are to further build these categories and expand to categories like jewellery, beauty and personal care and loungewear, among others — to offer a complete range of lifestyle products. 

Antler India announces its inaugural Antler India Fellowship cohort

The India arm of global early-stage venture capital firm, Antler, has announced 19 student entrepreneurs as part of its inaugural Antler India Fellowship cohort. 

Antler India Fellowship, announced in November 2021, aims to promote entrepreneurship at the university level and as a viable career option. It offers an equity-free grant of $20,000 and mentorship to India’s brightest students to turn their startup ideas into a business. Through a 16-week programme, it provides a platform for experimentation, building and scaling with the support of equity-free capital, mentors and a peer network. 

It received 2,400+ applications from students across the country, covering 375+ cities and 700+ colleges. Of all the applications received, eight teams were chosen (0.3 percent acceptance rate) to be a part of the cohort. 

The chosen student entrepreneurs gain access to a hands-on programme, facilitated by domain experts and founders, spanning idea validation, user research, product, engineering and marketing. Mentors include Suchita Salwan (Founder, LBB), Varun Khona (Founder, HeadOut), and Ankit Gupta (Founder, Quizizz) among others. 

Antler plans to deploy $100 million to $150 million in 100+ Indian startups over the next 3 years.

6 pc spike in demand for healthcare professionals on account of rising Omicron variant concerns

According to the Monster Employment Index, the job analysis report by, a Quess Company, robust growth in hiring activity was witnessed in the last six months with a 6 percent uptick, while December 2021 saw a monthly incline of 2 percent in December 2021 as compared to the previous month.


Across industries, the month of December 2021 saw retail and agro-based industries witnessing a positive incline of 12 percent, on account of multi-channel approaches, technological adoption, and government initiatives. The demand for roles in healthcare witnessed a surge of 6 percent on account of rising COVID-19 cases in the country, while roles in HR and admin (5 percent), and finance and accounts (4 percent) also saw an uptick over the month. Further, it is quite encouraging to note that the demand for entry-level/freshers and intermediate roles saw the highest monthly growth at 2 percent, as compared to other experience levels (December 2021 vs November 2021).

A year-on-year (December 2021 vs Decemeber 2020) comparison indicates that industries such as Retail (14 percent) and Travel and Tourism (4 percent) witnessed a revival and are estimated to grow further in 2022. Further, Tier-II cities such as Kolkata (13 percent), Coimbatore (11 percent), Kochi (5 percent), and Baroda (2 percent) observed favourable rise in hiring activity along with metro cities.

Craft Silicon and Karza Technologies partner to automate onboarding

Craft Silicon and Karza Technologies partnered to automate onboarding and verification with intelligent solutions to provide a delightful customer experience to Microlending Institutions. Digital disruption is picking up pace; through this partnership, Craft Silicon aims to leverage Karza Technologies and digitally empower the MFI sector (BFSI sector is a broad description) with advanced KYC services, bank account verification, front-end engagement for offering swift, smooth, and secure onboarding and user verification solution to Microlending Institutions.


Using Karza Technologies will further strengthen Craft Silicon’s resolve to provide a frictionless customer experience while ensuring the highest protection against fraud. Their commitment is a testament to the initiative and the joint ambition to significantly improve the onboarding experience for MFI customers.

With this partnership, both companies aim to simplify the onboarding process and reinforce financial inclusion. Companies aim to simplify the onboarding process and reinforce financial inclusion address match, which in turn will assist in achieving accurate matching of facial features and real-time verification of bank accounts. It will reduce errors and customer drops during loan processing resulting in high leads to client conversion and zero manipulation. 

Crowdfunding platform Donatekart joins hands with Mzaalo to impact millions of lives

Online crowdfunding platform DonateKart has partnered with Mzaalo, a blockchain-based gamified video streaming platform, to create a positive social impact nationwide.

This collaboration allows Mzaalo users to watch premium content and earn reward coins without having to pay any subscription fee. The platform gratifies the time and attention of users by allowing them to redeem their earned coins for Donatekart vouchers and make an impact in the lives of thousands.

Donatekart has been working towards empowering and uplifting the lives of countless people and animals across India since 2016. With causes varying from ending hunger, supporting the elderly, educating underprivileged children, helping injured animals and many more, Donatekart has impacted over 1000+ NGOs so far and raised over Rs 150 crore worth of donations with the support of 5+ lakh donors. 

Zaggle appoints Sathish N as Chief Product Officer

Zaggle, a SaaS fintech company that helps businesses digitise their spends, on Monday announced the appointment of Sathish N as its Chief Product Officer. The company aims to further strengthen its suite of financial products that help businesses digitise and aggregate their spends through automated and innovative workflows.

Sathish is a seasoned fintech product leader with 25+ years of experience in launching multiple enterprise-scale products and platforms to global markets out of India in the areas of digital transformation, omnichannel engagement, payments, fintech, digital lending, customer centricity, revenue management, Enterprise Product Catalog, and Digital Core Banking.

Sathish joins Zaggle from FSS where he was working as the Deputy Chief Product Officer. He is an Electronics and Communication Engineer from Bharathiar University and has participated in the Leadership programme at the INSEAD business school.

At Zaggle, Sathish will work closely with the Fintech’s MD and CEO, Avinash Godkhindi, and lead product innovation besides being in charge of all overall product strategy, design and development.

Plix launches a social responsibility initiative ‘Plant a Tree’ 

Plix, a clean plant-based nutrition brand for daily wellness and strength, recently launched the ‘Plant A Tree’ initiative to fulfil its brand promise of sustainability for the environment and better health for people. The initiative begins in January 2022 and will be a continuously ongoing initiative. Plix has pledged to plant a tree (seed) for every single purchase made by its customers. The company has earmarked a land parcel in Maharashtra to plant the saplings.

Right from the outset, Plix has strategically focused on sustaining the balance of nature. Not using any artificial ingredients such as preservatives, flavours or colours in Plix products was the first commitment by the brand. And now, Plix is taking its environment conservation efforts to the next level with the ‘Plant A Tree’ initiative.

Founded in 2019 by Rishubh Satiya and Akash Zaveri, Plix is on a mission to transform the dietary and lifestyle habits of people globally. The brand is constantly innovating to replace the conventional formats of pills with palatable gummies, superfood powders, and effervescent. The company has products across categories such as weight loss, hair and skin nutrition, daily wellness, women’s health, and workout.

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8 Ways You Can Save Yourself and Others From Being Scammed



Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Statistics on the number of scam websites that litter the internet are disturbing. During 2020, Google registered more than 2 million phishing websites alone. That means more than 5,000 new phishing sites popped up every day — not to mention the ones that avoided Google’s detection. In 2021, the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) reported nearly $7 billion in losses from cybercrime that is perpetrated through these sites.

What exactly are scam websites? Scam websites refer to any illegitimate website that is used to deceive users into fraud or malicious attacks. Many scammers operate these fake websites and will download viruses onto your computer or steal passwords or other personal information.

Reporting these sites as they are encountered is an important part of fighting back. In other words, if you see something, say something. Keeping quiet, even if you avoid falling prey, allows the scammers to aim at another target.

Perhaps you’ve received a suspicious link in an email? Or maybe a strange text message that you haven’t clicked on. Fortunately, there are many organizations out there that have launched efforts aimed at reducing the threat that they pose. In general, these organizations put scam websites on the radar by collecting and sharing information about them. In some cases, they prompt an investigation into the scammers behind the sites.

Related: Learn How to Protect Your Business From Cybercrime

It’s free to report a suspicious website you’ve encountered, and it takes just a minute. Here are eight ways you can report a suspected scam website to stop cyber criminals and protect yourself and others online.

1. The Internet Crime Complaint Center

The IC3, as it is known, is an office of the FBI that receives complaints from those who have been the victims of internet-related crime. The IC3 defines the internet crimes that it addresses to include illegal activity involving websites. Complaints filed with the IC3 are reviewed and researched by trained FBI analysts.

2. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency

CISA, which is an agency of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, targets a wide range of malicious cyber activity. It specifically requests reports on phishing activity utilizing fraudulent websites. Information provided to CISA is shared with the Anti-Phishing Working Group, a non-profit focused on reducing the impact of phishing-related fraud around the world.


The site, run by the International Consumer Protection and Enforcement Network, is for reporting international scams. It is supported by consumer protection agencies and related offices in more than 65 countries. A secure version of their site is used by law enforcement agencies to share info on scams.

4. Google Safe Browsing

While Google does not have a mechanism for reporting all varieties of website scams, there is a form for reporting sites that are suspected of being used to carry out phishing. Reports made via the form are managed by Google’s Safe Browsing team. Google’s Transparency Report provides information on the sites that it has determined to be “currently dangerous to visit.”

Related: Is That Instagram Email a Phishing Attack? Now You Can Find Out.

5. PhishTank

This service was founded by Cisco Talos Intelligence Group to “pour sunshine on some of the dark alleys of the Internet.” Phishtank includes an ever-growing list of URLs reported as being involved in phishing scams. To date, it has received more than 7.5 million reports of potential phishing sites. It says that more than 100,000 of the sites are still online.

Related: 6 Ways Better Business Bureau Accreditation Can Boost Your Business

6. Antivirus Apps

Antivirus providers such as Norton, Kaspersky, and McAfee have forms that can be used to identify pages that users feel should be blocked. Scam sites would definitely fall under that category. With some antivirus platforms, reporting forms can only be accessed by registered users. Norton’s is open to anyone.

7. Web host

There is a chance that the DNS service hosting the scam site will take action to shut it down. There are a variety of online resources that can help you to find the DNS of a particular site. Once you identify it, send a message to their customer service reporting the site in question and the experience that you had.

8. Share your experience on social media

This is actually more like sounding an alarm than filing a report, but it might protect one of your connections who stumbles upon the same site or is targeted by the same type of scam. At the very least, it could draw attention to the fact that scam sites affect real people. A post on Facebook about a close call you had with a scam might better equip your network to avoid any dangerous entanglements. If it does, they’ll thank you.

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LastPass hacked, OpenAI opens access to ChatGPT, and Kanye gets suspended from Twitter (again) • TechCrunch



Aaaaand we’re back! With our Thanksgiving mini-hiatus behind us, it’s time for another edition of Week in Review — the newsletter where we quickly wrap up the most read TechCrunch stories from the past seven(ish) days. No matter how busy you are, it should give you a pretty good idea of what people were talking about in tech this week.

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most read

Instafest goes instaviral: You’ve probably been to a great music festival before. But have you been to one made just for you? Probably not. Instafest, a web app that went super viral this week, helps you daydream about what that festival might look like. Sign in with your Spotify credentials and it’ll generate a promo poster for a pretend festival based on your listening habits.

LastPass breached (again): “Password manager LastPass said it’s investigating a security incident after its systems were compromised for the second time this year,” writes Zack Whittaker. Investigations are still underway, which unfortunately means it’s not super clear what (and whose) data might’ve been accessed.

ChatGPT opens up: This week, OpenAI widely opened up access to ChatGPT, which lets you interact with their new language-generation AI through a simple chat-style interface. In other words, it lets you generate (sometimes scarily well-written) passages of text by chatting with a robot. Darrell used it to instantly write the Pokémon cheat sheet he’s always wanted.

AWS re:Invents: This week, Amazon Web Services hosted its annual re:Invent conference, where the company shows off what’s next for the cloud computing platform that powers a massive chunk of the internet. This year’s highlights? A low-code tool for serverless apps, a pledge to give AWS customers control over where in the world their data is stored (to help navigate increasingly complicated government policies), and a tool to run “city-sized simulations” in the cloud.

Twitter suspends Kanye (again): “Elon Musk has suspended Kanye West’s (aka Ye) Twitter account after the latter posted antisemitic tweets and violated the platform’s rules,” writes Ivan Mehta.

Spotify Wraps it up: Each year in December, Spotify ships “Wrapped” — an interactive feature that takes your Spotify listening data for the year and presents it in a super visual way. This year it’s got the straightforward stuff like how many minutes you streamed, but it’s also branching out with ideas like “listening personalities” — a Myers-Briggs-inspired system that puts each user into one of 16 camps, like “the Adventurer” or “the Replayer.”

DoorDash layoffs: I was hoping to go a week without a layoffs story cracking the list. Alas, DoorDash confirmed this week that it’s laying off 1,250 people, with CEO Tony Xu explaining that they hired too quickly during the pandemic.

Salesforce co-CEO steps down: “In one week last December, [Bret Taylor] was named board chair at Twitter and co-CEO at Salesforce,” writes Ron Miller. “One year later, he doesn’t have either job.” Taylor says he has “decided to return to [his] entrepreneurial roots.”

audio roundup

I expected things to be a little quiet in TC Podcast land last week because of the holiday, but we somehow still had great shows! Ron Miller and Rita Liao joined Darrell Etherington on The TechCrunch Podcast to talk about the departure of Salesforce’s co-CEO and China’s “great wall of porn”; Team Chain Reaction shared an interview with Nikil Viswanathan, CEO of web3 development platform Alchemy; and the ever-lovely Equity crew talked about everything from Sam Bankman-Fried’s wild interview at DealBook to why all three of the co-founders at financing startup Pipe stepped down simultaneously.


What lies behind the TC+ members-only paywall? Here’s what TC+ members were reading most this week:

Lessons for raising $10M without giving up a board seat: has raised $10 million over the last two years, all “without giving up a single board seat.” How? co-founder Henry Shapiro shares his insights.

Consultants are the new nontraditional VC: “Why are so many consultant-led venture capital funds launching now?” asks Rebecca Szkutak.

Fundraising in times of greater VC scrutiny: “Founders may be discouraged in this environment, but they need to remember that they have ‘currency,’ too,” writes DocSend co-founder and former CEO Russ Heddleston.

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Building global, scalable metaverse applications



Previously we talked about the trillion-dollar infrastructure opportunity that comes with building the metaverse — and it is indeed very large. But what about the applications that will run on top of this new infrastructure?

Metaverse applications will be very different from the traditional web or mobile apps that we are used to today. For one, they will be much more immersive and interactive, blurring the lines between the virtual and physical worlds. And because of the distributed nature of the metaverse, they will also need to be able to scale globally — something that has never been done before at this level.

In this article, we will take a developer’s perspective and explore what it will take to build global, scalable metaverse applications.

As you are aware, the metaverse will work very differently from the web or mobile apps we have today. For one, it is distributed, meaning there is no central server that controls everything. This has a number of implications for developers:


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  • They will need to be able to deal with data that is spread out across many different servers (or “nodes”) in a decentralized manner.
  • They will need to be able to deal with users that are also spread out across many different servers.
  • They will need to be able to deal with the fact that each user may have a different experience of the metaverse, based on their location and the devices they are using due to the fact not everyone has the same tech setup, and this plays a pivotal role in how the metaverse is experienced by each user.

These challenges are not insurmountable, but they do require a different way of thinking about application development. Let’s take a closer look at each one.

Data control and manipulation

In a traditional web or mobile app, all the data is stored on a central server. This makes it easy for developers to query and manipulate that data because everything is in one place.

In a distributed metaverse, however, data is spread out across many different servers. This means that developers will need to find new ways to query and manipulate data that is not centrally located.

One way to do this is through the blockchain itself. This distributed ledger, as you know, is spread out across many different servers and allows developers to query and manipulate data in a decentralized manner.

Another way to deal with the challenge of data is through what is known as “content delivery networks” (CDNs). These are networks of servers that are designed to deliver content to users in a fast and efficient manner.

CDNs are often used to deliver web content, but they can also be used to deliver metaverse content. This is because CDNs are designed to deal with large amounts of data that need to be delivered quickly and efficiently — something that is essential for metaverse applications.

Users and devices

Another challenge that developers will need to face is the fact that users and devices are also spread out across many different servers. This means that developers will need to find ways to deliver content to users in a way that is efficient and effective.

One way to do this is through the use of “mirrors.” Mirrors are copies of the content that are stored on different servers. When a user requests content, they are redirected to the nearest mirror, which helps to improve performance and reduce latency.

When a user’s device is not able to connect to the server that is hosting the content, another way to deliver content is through “proxies.” Proxies are servers that act on behalf of the user’s device and fetch the content from the server that is hosting it.

This can be done in a number of ways, but one common way is through the use of a “reverse proxy.” In this case, the proxy server is located between the user’s device and the server that is hosting the content. The proxy fetches the content from the server and then delivers it to the user’s device.

Location and devices

As we mentioned before, each user’s experience of the metaverse will be different based on their location and the devices they are using. This is because not everyone has the same tech setup, and this plays a pivotal role in how the metaverse is experienced by each user.

For example, someone who is using a virtual reality headset will have a completely different experience than someone who is just using a desktop computer. And someone who is located in Europe will have a different experience than someone who is located in Asia.

Though it may not be obvious why geographical location would play a part in something that is meant to be boundless, think of it this way. The internet is a physical infrastructure that is spread out across the world. And although the metaverse is not bound by the same physical limitations, it still relies on this infrastructure to function.

This means that developers will need to take into account the different geographical locations of their users and devices and design their applications accordingly. They will need to be able to deliver content quickly and efficiently to users all over the world, regardless of their location.

Different geographical locations also have different laws and regulations. This is something that developers will need to be aware of when designing applications for the metaverse. They will need to make sure that their applications are compliant with all applicable laws and regulations.

Application development

Now that we’ve looked at some of the challenges that developers will need to face, let’s take a look at how they can develop metaverse applications. Since the metaverse is virtual, the type of development that is required is different from traditional application development.

The first thing that developers will need to do is to create a “space”. A space is a virtual environment that is used to host applications.

Spaces are created using a variety of different tools, but the most popular tool currently is Unity, a game engine used to create 3D environments.

Once a space has been created, developers will need to populate it with content. This content can be anything from 3D models to audio files.

The next step is to publish the space. This means that the space will be made available to other users, who will be able to access the space through a variety of different devices, including desktop computers, laptops, tablets, and smartphones.

Finally, developers will need to promote their space. This means that they will need to market their space to users.

Getting applications to scale

Since web 3.0 is decentralized, scalability is usually the biggest challenge because traditional servers are almost impossible to use. IPFS is one solution that can help with this problem.

IPFS is a distributed file system used to store and share files. IPFS is similar to BitTorrent, but it is designed to be used for file storage rather than file sharing.

IPFS is a peer-to-peer system, which means that there is no central server. This makes IPFS very scalable because there is no single point of failure.

To use IPFS, developers will need to install it on their computer and add their space to the network. Then, other users will be able to access it.

The bottom line on building global, scalable metaverse applications

To finish off, the technology to build scalable metaverse applications already exists; but a lot of creativity is still required to make it all work together in a user-friendly way. The key is to keep the following concepts in mind:

  • The metaverse is global and decentralized
  • Users will access the metaverse through a variety of devices
  • Location and device management are important
  • Application development is different from traditional development
  • Scalability is a challenge, but IPFS can help

Clearly, we can’t have an article series about building the metaverse without discussing NFTs. In fact, these might be the key to making a global, decentralized, metaverse work. In our next article, we will explore how NFTs can be used in the metaverse.

By keeping these concepts in mind, developers will be able to create metaverse applications that are both user-friendly and scalable.

Daniel Saito is CEO and cofounder of StrongNode

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