Flipkart Announces Funding from SoftBank, Calls It ‘Biggest Private Investment in an Indian Tech Company’

Flipkart Announces Funding from SoftBank, Calls It 'Biggest Private Investment in an Indian Tech Company'

In a statement on Thursday, Flipkart announced an investment from the SoftBank Vision Fund, as a part of Flipkart’s previously announced round of financing. In its statement, Flipkart pointed out that this is the biggest ever private investment in an Indian technology company, and will make the SoftBank Vision Fund one of the largest shareholders in Flipkart.

With this, Flipkart will now have over $4 billion (approximately Rs. 25,585 crores) in cash on its balance sheet, the company stated. This includes the rest of the funds raised in the latest round, which includes investment from Microsoft, eBay, and Tencent.

In a prepared statement, co-founders Binny Bansal and Sachin Bansal said: “This is a monumental deal for Flipkart and India. Very few economies globally attract such overwhelming interest from top-tier investors. It is recognition of India’s unparalleled potential to become a leader in technology and e-commerce on a massive scale. SoftBank’s proven track record of partnering with transformative technology leaders has earned it the reputation of being a visionary investor. We’re excited to welcome the Vision Fund as a long-term partner as we continue to build our business with a focus on serving the needs of all Indians, and driving the next phase of technology adoption in India.”

In recent times, Flipkart also completed the acquisition of eBay India, and was reportedly in talks to acquire Snapdeal. SoftBank is one of the lead investors in Snapdeal, though the day after Snapdeal announced that it terminated talks with Flipkart, it emerged that SoftBank was looking to invest in Flipkart.

“India is a land of vast opportunity,” said Masayoshi Son, Founder, Chairman, and CEO of SoftBank Group. “We want to support innovative companies that are clear winners in India because they are best positioned to leverage technology and help people lead better lives. As the pioneers in Indian e-commerce, Flipkart is doing that every day.”

“The Vision Fund is proud to be part of this landmark transaction which is a strong endorsement of India and its thriving economy,” added Rajeev Misra, CEO of the SoftBank Vision Fund. “We look forward to being a part of Flipkart’s journey towards becoming one of the most successful e-commerce companies in the world.”

 [Source”indianexpress”]

Top 6 sports cars spied in July

Top 6 sports cars spied in July

We love cars that are fast and furious and it doesn’t matter what size they are. These cars evolve with time and it is always interesting to see how they are going to turn out in the next iteration. Here are a few sports cars that we have spotted testing over the last month.

Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato

Zagato, the Italian coach-builder, is known for their unique design style marked by the signature rear fenders and the double-bubble on the roof. The latest sportscar to get the Zagato treatment is the Aston Martin Vanquish. Sadly, there is no hard-top for the double bubble but the vintage lines can be seen on the Volante and Speedster. The Volante gets a soft top and the Speedster is an open-top fury.

Ford Mustang

Well, what can be better than spotting two new Mustangs? The first one is the new Ford Mustang for the European market while the other one is the GT350. The GT badge has been immortalised by the large V8 engines belting out insane amounts of power. We already have the pony car in India and we certainly wouldn’t mind the GT coming in soon!

BMW Z5

The BMW Z5 is the successor of the largely popular two-seater convertible, the Z4. While it continues to get the long hood, the bubble-cabin and the stubby boot, the design style now depicts the latest Beemers. It gets the signature twin-ring headlamps and should be powered by four and six cylinder petrol engines driving the rear wheels.

Renault Megane RS

The Renault Megane RS has been French’s answer to Volkswagen’s Golf GTI. It is a large hatch that packs all the performance of a mini supercar in it and is the only French hot hatch. The new Megane RS gets the all-new Renault fascia, an entire aero pack and revised suspension to handle its power and speed.

Porsche 718 Boxster GTS

The tiniest Porsche is now set to get more horsepower. While the standard 718 gets a four cylinder engine, the GTS should have ideally got a six cylinder. Sadly, the fleet emission laws will end up keeping the pots down to four but the GTS will certainly have more horses at the whip than the standard Boxster.

Jaguar XE SVR

Jaguar had teased the Project 8 and now we have the spy pictures of the XE SVR. While we are not sure if they are the same, we are sure about one thing and that is the unbridled performance of this car. The 5.0-litre V8 will be pumping some insane horsepower and will make sure it gives the M3s and the C63s a run for their money

[Source”timesofindia”]

WR-V spearheads Honda’s surge in Q3 2017

WR-V spearheads Honda’s surge in Q3 2017Car sales were expected to surge after the GST roll out and now it seems like the market has reacted exactly as predicted. Honda has reported its second highest numbers of 2017 after it managed to sell 17,085 units in the month of July. Leading the pack is the Honda WR-V, as the SUV just edged past Honda’s long-time bestseller, the Honda City.

Honda WR-V managed to sell 4,894 units in July, about 600 units more than it sold in June, plotting a steady rise in its sales charts. The rising graph shows the popularity of SUVs despite Honda selling only higher end trims that come at a premium. The Honda City seems to have lost a bit of steam after the initial surge post the launch of the facelift. With just 4,854 units sold in July, the City has registered its second lowest numbers over the past six months.

The Honda Jazz premium hatchback and the Amaze compact sedans have also shown a sharp rise over sales of the past two months, but that might be because of the deferred deliveries and stocks despatch to work around the GST. Even the BR-V has limped past the 1,000 units mark after almost four months.

[Source”timesofindia”]

Lexus inaugurates its fourth showroom in the country

Lexus inaugurates its fourth showroom in the country

In efforts to further strengthen its presence in the country, Lexus has inaugurated its fourth showroom in the country in Bengaluru. The showrooms called Lexus Guest Experience Centers (GECs), is present in other three locations – New Delhi, Mumbai and Gurgaon. The New Delhi and Gurgaon outlets were inaugurated on 25th March, while the Mumbai outlet was inaugurated on 28th March 2017.

The company claims that the GECs have been designed in line with Lexus’ value of ‘Omotenashi’ which focusses on providing exceptional hospitality. Moreover, the company claims that the guest experience centers were designed specifically to allow guests to experience Lexus vehicles as well as the Lexus lifestyle, which begins right from the moment they step into the experience centers and receive a warm welcome from an exclusive Lexus Relationship Manager.

The newest GEC in Bengaluru is a combination of Kannadiga and Japanese cultures. The ‘Sangam Jaali’ in the hosting area refers to unity of two rivers and is inspired from the Indian style of greeting Namaste and Omotenashi of Japanese culture. The ‘Jaali’ also draws historic inspiration from the provincial-age window patterns. The beautiful amalgamation of advanced mobility and fine craftmanship is seen in the handcrafted Hampi Chariot installed on the wall while the guests also witness signature ‘L’ type elements in the design of palletes and exterior elevations, with spindle shaped lights drawing from core Lexus design features.

Speaking on occasion of inauguration of Bengaluru facility Akitoshi Takemura, Senior Vice President, Lexus India said, “The best part is that no two Lexus Guest Experience Centers are the same. Each center is uniquely designed to suit local tastes and provide an exclusive experience to our guests. Core to the ownership experience is the relationship with Lexus, which begins the moment a guest steps into one of centers – and lasts a lifetime.” Lexus sells the ES 300h, RX 450h and LX 450d in India.

[Source”cnbc”]

BMW launches the 320d Edition Sport in India at Rs 38.60 lakhs

BMW launches the 320d Edition Sport in India at Rs 38.60 lakhs

BMW 3 Series gets a new 320d Edition Sport variant in India at Rs 38.60 lakhs (ex-showroom Delhi). The Edition Sport is the fifth trim to the 320d 3 Series in the country as it joins the Prestige, Sport Line, Luxury Line and M Sport variant. According to the pricing, the Edition Sport is positioned between the Prestige and Sport Line trim.

What sets the Edition Sport apart are the high-gloss inserts both fore and aft. BMW’s famous kidney grille slats are finished in high-gloss black. The interior is a work in contrast of black and red, to add to the car’s sporty character. There is also contrast red stitching on the steering wheel and gear shift paddles. It gets a sunroof as well. The music system is a 205 Watt, nine-speaker Hi-Fi loudspeaker unit.  The iDrive continues with the 6.5-inch display with CD drive, BMW apps, Bluetooth and USB/AUX connectivity, and rear view camera with park distance control.

The keys to the 320d Edition Sport is designed in red decorative trim. The Edition Sport can be had in Alpine White as a non-metallic colour and Black Sapphire and Mediterranean Blue as a metallic colour. The choice of upholstery includes Sensatec Black/Red highlight, Black and Sensatec Veneto Beige and Veneto Beige.

Under the hood of the 320d Edition Sport is the same turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder diesel engine producing 188bhp of power at 4,000rpm and 400Nm of torque between 1,750–2,500rpm. The engine is mated to an eight-speed Steptronic automatic transmission, sending power to rear wheels and is available with steering-mounted paddle shifters. The sedan would accelerate from 0-100kmph in 7.2 seconds to a top speed of 250 kmph. The 320d Edition Sport claims a fuel efficiency of 22.69 kmpl.

Furthermore, the BMW 320d Edition Sport comes with a Launch Control function as standard. Also standard are six air bags, ABS with brake assist, dynamic stability control including traction control, Cornering Brake Control (CBC), ISOFIX child seat mounting, run-flat tyres with reinforced sidewalls, emergency spare wheel, vehicle immobiliser and crash sensor.

BMW’s executive sedan has been highly successful in India. Its 320d variant has been the work horse for the Bavarian carmaker and introducing a new sports trim to the portfolio stretches the choices for the customer. The 3 Series goes up against the Mercedes-Benz Class, Audi A4, and Jaguar XE in India.

[Source”cnbc”]

WR-V spearheads Honda’s surge in Q3 2017

WR-V spearheads Honda’s surge in Q3 2017

Car sales were expected to surge after the GST roll out and now it seems like the market has reacted exactly as predicted. Honda has reported its second highest numbers of 2017 after it managed to sell 17,085 units in the month of July. Leading the pack is the Honda WR-V, as the SUV just edged past Honda’s long-time bestseller, the Honda City.

Honda WR-V managed to sell 4,894 units in July, about 600 units more than it sold in June, plotting a steady rise in its sales charts. The rising graph shows the popularity of SUVs despite Honda selling only higher end trims that come at a premium. The Honda City seems to have lost a bit of steam after the initial surge post the launch of the facelift. With just 4,854 units sold in July, the City has registered its second lowest numbers over the past six months.

The Honda Jazz premium hatchback and the Amaze compact sedans have also shown a sharp rise over sales of the past two months, but that might be because of the deferred deliveries and stocks despatch to work around the GST. Even the BR-V has limped past the 1,000 units mark after almost four months

[Source”indianexpress”]

Asus Zenfone 4 Pro appears in Italy [Updated]

A tipster has shared an image containing three Asus smartphones, saying these could well be the next-gen Zenfone 4 trio.

View image on Twitter

View image on Twitter

While no other details were shared, reports say the first one is the regular Zenfone 4, while the third unit is the Pro variant. The second one could be the Zenfone 4s.

Original story follows:

Asus announced six Zenfone 4 phones would arrive in the second half of 2017. The Zenfone 4 Max was the first of them, being officially unveiled at the beginning of July. Now the Zenfone 4 Pro also appeared, thanks to a leak from Italy.

The Pro phone is expected to be the flagship of the whole Zenfone 4 series and it seems to have the right specs for the task. The device comes with a Snapdragon 835 chipset with 6 GB RAM. The screen is a 5.7” AMOLED panel of QHD resolution.

   

There is a dual camera setup that sports a “2x zoom” label, suggesting one of the modules sits behind a telephoto lens. The OS of the phone is Android 7.1.1 Nougat, and the Zenfone 4 Pro will likely have the latest ZenUI on top. The phone is photographed with a security case, so the design, for now, is still a mystery.

The official launch of the device is yet to be confirmed, but earlier reports pointed to an event on September 21.

[Source”timesofindia”]

Female official works LaVar Ball AAU game in solidarity with removed official

Image result for Female official works LaVar Ball AAU game in solidarity with removed official

LAS VEGAS — A female official officiated Friday night’s game between LaVar Ball’s Big Baller Brand and College Bound in the Adidas Uprising Summer Championships in a display of solidarity for another female official who was berated and replaced after she gave Ball a technical foul Friday morning.

The group that supplies officials, Court Club Elite, had initially pushed for an all-female crew, according to a source. Before tipoff, a source said a “compromise” had been reached that would have two women and one man officiate the game.

But Friday’s crew featured only one woman alongside two men. It was unknown why the change was made.

A female official was removed from Friday morning’s game after Ball threatened to pull his team from the court if she were allowed to stay.

“She’s gotta go,” he repeated before she was replaced.

The official, who was visibly shaken after her removal, was replaced by a male official.

After the game, Ball criticized the woman, a Division I women’s basketball official, and said she wasn’t fit to officiate and claimed she wasn’t in shape. He also said she should “stay in your lane.”

Court Club Elite is owned and operated by ex-NBA ref Ed Rush.

Also Friday, a source said officials with Adidas had pressured referees at the event to avoid calling technical fouls against Ball because of his drawing power and value to the tournament.

The source said Court Club Elite officials were told to “put three officials on the game who will keep him in the building” whenever Ball’s team played this week.

Ball pulled his team off the court last weekend after receiving a technical foul during a playoff game at the Double Pump Best of Summer Tournament in Anaheim, California.

In Las Vegas, he drew a technical foul in Wednesday’s loss to Zion Williamson’s SC Supreme squad. He did not get a technical Thursday when, according to a source, he used profanity toward officials throughout the game. The technical issued by the female official Friday morning was his second in three days at the tournament.

Source:-ESPN

Samsung overtakes Intel to become the biggest chip maker in Q2 2017

Yesterday Samsung reported its record quarter results which were spearheaded by its chip business, which earned $15.7B in revenue and $7.2B in profit.

That’s almost twice as much compared to Intel’s operating income of $3.8B on $14.8B revenue in the same second quarter of 2017 – a record quarter for Intel at that.

What’s interesting here is that no one has surpassed Intel in the last 24 years and Samsung did it without making a single desktop chipset – only catering to mobiles and wearables.

Intel has failed to make an impact on mobile despite its various efforts with Atom and it still hasn’t figured out wearables.

Expect Samsung’s rise to continue throughout 2017 as the giant is developing mobile chip solutions for the automotive industry as well.

[Source”cnbc”]

Lenovo to announce the K8 Note in India next month

Lenovo has revealed on its social media accounts that it will be launching the K8 Note on August 9, 2017.

Most of you did get it right! The #LenovoK8Note will #KillTheOrdinary & leave the rest behind! Ready to see it uncage on 09.08.17? Save it!

The K8 Note is the successor to last year’s K6 Note, which was a reasonably specced low cost big screen smartphone that are all the rage these days. We do not have confirmation on the specs yet for the K8 Note but a Geekbench listing mentions a MediaTek MT6797 and 4GB of RAM.

We will know for sure when the device launches next month.

[Source”cnbc”]