Rediff, one of India’s Internet pioneers, has launched a new messaging platform called Conversations. Rediff told MediaNama that it is still in beta phase and is part of their paid email service. The messaging service will allow real-time interaction between users on the Rediff platform.
Conversations will allow users to share articles, links, images and documents and Rediff is looking at making Conversations a knowledge repository for various topics within a company. The company added that they have deployed the tool for key clients in the insurance, manufacturing, automobile and services sectors in India.
In Conversations, a group of users can create and converse on a topic of their common interest. It also searches for documents, comments or users and results are displayed instantaneously.
Note since the product is in beta phase, we haven’t been able to access it and check the product for ourselves. But given the fact it has deployed the tool for select clients, it looks like Rediff is targeting the enterprise communications space and trying to introduce a product à la Slack.
It’s worth noting that in 2011, Rediff had launched a micro-blogging site called ZaraBol (it’s still around, by the way), which was heavily inspired from Twitter, complete with the 140 character message limit except for posts from Rediff , Sab Ko Bol. There were some additions, such as the ability to follow a buzzing topic, but it didn’t seem enough and they still haven’t moved to mobile which probably is why it hasn’t grown as much.
If Rediff is trying to get a new messaging platform off the ground, it would be best if they made the transition to mobile and offer its clients more than a few extra features.
It’s worth noting that the company in its earnings call said it is beta testing Rediffmail CRM Lite, targeting small and medium enterprises with a field force. The product allows merchants to store sales records, emails and contact details in one place. It says the software works across devices, and works for sales persons who are constantly on the move. Merchants can manage their sales funnel and generate customized reports in CSV format. There’s an opportunity here to integrate the messaging platform to handle CRM functions too.
Rediff moves stocks to smaller market
Earlier in August, Rediff moved its stocks from the Nasdaq Global Market to the Nasdaq Capital Market as the company did not meet the stock market’s meet the minimum stockholders equity level for continued listing on the bourse. “The continuing listing requirements of the Nasdaq Capital Market are, in the Company’s opinion, more appropriate for companies at rediff’s scale of operation.” the company said in a filing.
The company reported that at the end of June 30th, 2015, it had $7.6M (around Rs 48.6 crore) in cash and cash equivalents. Total revenues for the company decreased 19.4% year on year to $3.29 million, down from $4.08 million in the same quarter last year. The company reported a loss of $1.75 million, which is almost half of the $3.48 million loss in the same quarter last year.Rediff’s losses declined largely because it reported a significant 39.1% reduction in operating expenses down to $2.86 million from $4.7 million a year ago.