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News Digest: Bharti Airtel, FlipKart, HTCampus.com, E-Governance, Pyro, Comviva, MoneyControl


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– Bharti Airtel is launching a mobile-money transfer service in Madagascar on the lines of Orange SA’s Orange Money and Telma’s M-Vola. Airtel targets 3.2 million subscribers by end of 2011 and invest $50 million in the country. More at Bloomberg

– Accel partners backed e-commerce site Flipkart, last month, acquired a social book reccomendation platform weRead from US based on demand publishing firm, Lulu. Read the Press Release

– Hindustan Times’ education portal HTCampus.com has launched a Test preparation section in association with Vriti that will feature mock tests for students preparing for competeive exams including entrance exams like IIT-JEE, CAT, AIIMS and others. Press Release

– Fourteen Mission Mode Projects have gone live under the National e-governance plan which has approved 27 MMPs for delivering services electronically. More than 86,000 Common Service Centres have been established and will generate more than one lakh rural micro-enterprises. Press Release

– A Ministry of Finance notification has recognized the Aadhaar number or unique identification number issued by UIDAI as an officially valid document for opening a bank account. Read the Press Release

– Axis Bank, India’s third largest private Bank,has launched AxisDirect, an online trading platform, marking their foray into retail broking business. AxisDirect is a product of Axis Securities and Sales Limited, a 100% subsidiary of Axis Bank

– The Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion (DIPP)that issues Industrial Licences has added a feature to track and monitor the status of the IL application on its website http://dipp.nic.in under the link ‘SIA Application status – Track your IL application’. Press Release

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– The Times Audience Network, the digital video arm of the Times Group, will offer interactive video advertising via a partnership with Brainient, including – interactive overlays to pre-rolls and other video content through a simple drag-and-drop interface. Additionally, Pandurang Nayak has joined as General Manager, Times Audience Network, replacing Sameer Pitalwalla, who moved last month to UTV New Media. Disclosure: Indiatimes is an advertiser with MediaNama.

– Karbonn Mobiles may raise $50m from PE Investors, reports Times of India

– Hyderabad based mobile technology solutions provider, Pyro has tied up with Bangladesh’s Citycell mobile network to enable utility bill payments on Citycell’s CDMA mobile network. Press Release

– Saudi Arabia has made it mandatory to acquire a license before starting an e-publishing web site. This applies to blogs and online newspapers. The site also needs to display: the license publicly after receiving a special approval from the Culture and Information ministry. More at The Economic Times

– Mobile VAS provider Comviva announced that its Mobiquity mobile money transfer platform can support Western Union services enabling users to send and receive money through the latter’s money transfer system after being certified to participate in the program. Press Release

– Web18’s business portal MoneyControl.com has renamed its Message Board to M3. It has also launched Message board apps for Apple iPhone and Blackberry platforms.

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