Flipkart-owned fashion e-tailer Myntra has acquired a Bangalore-based smart wearable startup Witworks for an undisclosed amount. As part of the acquisition, Witworks’s joins Myntra’s team in its Innovation Labs in Bangalore.
Witworks Consumer Technologies was founded in 2014 by Somnath Meher, Ankit DP and Chandrashekhar Iyer, alumni of IIT-Kharagpur. It launched its flagship wearable device, the Blink smart watch in 2016, which operates on their voice-based platform, Marvin OS. The platform integrates a host of native and third party services capable of voice and visual interactions, designed for wearable devices.
This acquisition will allow Myntra to develop wearable products for their in-house brands and later on use the technology in consumer engagement. Jeyandran Venugopal, Chief Technology Officer, Myntra, said in a statement that this transaction will help the company to launch products like smart shoes, connected smart watches and interactive/intelligent clothing with biosensors.
Myntra’s Private label biz
Looks like Myntra is looking at amplifying its private label category with this move. Its private label business also turned profitable on an EBITDA level in September last year. As of now, Myntra’s private brands portfolio includes 13 brands- all apparels.
Smart Wearable space in India
The smartwatch segment is crowded with several players. The most popular smartwatches are Apple Watch, Samsung Galaxy Gear S3, GQii, Xiaomi, Garmin, Asus Zenwatch, etc. Meanwhile watch companies like Titan too are eyeing the segment. In November last year, Tata Group’s Titan invested close to $3-$5 million in Singapore-headquartered wearable tech startup CoveIoT.
Mandatory registration with Govt
Note that, The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (Meity) has added smartwatches, along with CCTV cameras and recorders, iris scanners, and optical fingerprint scanners among 13 new electronic products to the Electronics and Information Technology Goods (Requirement for Compulsory Registration) Order, 2012, making it compulsory for manufacturers of these products to meet standards as stipulated by the Indian government, and companies will also not be allowed to import any non-compliant product for sale in the country. The standard that is required to be followed in case of smartwatches and CCTV cameras that are covered by the Information Technology Equipment – Safety General Requirements. Read it here.