Developments that you may have missed in the past week.

Online pharmacy

Online pharmacy Medlife will now expand its retail pharmacy presence and will open 750 pharmacies by the end of 2020, reports Business Standard. The company is looking to achieve the target through acquisition of offline pharmacy chains. Medlife CEO and co-founder Tushar Kumar said the company has put aside Rs 250 crore for this, it will also raise money via internal accruals, and has commitment from the Alkem Family Trust.

New retail pharmacies: The stores will operate as retail pharmacies and will also provide hyperlocal delivery of medicines. Medlife is currently present in 21 cities with 50 licensed pharmacies through which it dispenses medicines for orders on its platform. It will be adding 60 more pharmacies as fulfilment centres to expand to a total of 50 cities countrywide. Its focus is on Tier II cities such as  Indore, Chandigarh, Mangalore, Durgapur, Howrah, Surat, Nagpur and Kanpur among others, Kumar added.

The company is also looking at operating out-patient department pharmacies of hospitals; it will now manage pharmacies of Fortis Hospitals.

Content

Spotify has announced a global content partnership with film and music company T-Series, whose library will now be available to Spotify starting today, reports Mint. The deal also means that Spotify is moving towards a launch in India, which may be expected in the first quarter of 2019. Head of International Licensing at Spotify Paul Smith said Bollywood songs will now be available to 200 million Spotify users worldwide. In November 2018, reports emerged that Spotify could launch in India within 6 months.

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ZEE5 has entered a content partnership with Smart TV brand Cloudwalker, the ZEE5 app will now be available on the Smart TV’s homepage. In the recent months, ZEE5 has partnered VEWD, Xiaomi MiTV, Samsung, and with LG Smart TV. ZEE5 claims to have 3500 films, 500 shows, 4000 music videos and 90 live channels as part of its library. It has content in 11 Indian languages.

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Paytm is looking to launch an OTT service has started hiring people for the service, reports the Economic Times. For now, Paytm has an existing content partnerships with YuppTV, FunkYou, and SonyLIV.

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TataSky ShortsTV has acquired 18 ‘shorts’ from Terribly Tiny Tales, the shorts will be featured on Tata Sky ShortsTV channel, the company said in a statement. The channel was launched jointly by TataSky and ShortsTV in November. Its a paid-for channel at Rs 75 per month. The company claims that the short movies will be aired on TV for the first time.

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Hotstar will invest Rs 120 crore into producing original content to compete with existing players like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and others.

Food / grocery delivery

Bangalore-based hyperlocal grocery delivery platform DailyNinja claims to have completed 15 million orders till date. The platform primarily provides early morning milk and grocery deliveries. The company claims to have a monthly subscriber base of 70,000 households and claims to complete 52,000 transactions per day across Bangalore, Hyderabad, Chennai, Mumbai and Pune. It was founded in 2015, and is backed by Sequioa India, Matrix Partners, and Saama Capital.

Hotels

Oyo said it is working on having 1 million room inventory from its present inventory of 4.6 lakh rooms, reports Mint. Oyo CEO for India and South Asia, Aditya Ghosh said he expects this to happen in the next 1-1.5 years. Oyo promoter Ritesh Agarwal said it has set a target of 2.5 million rooms by 2023.

  • Oyo currently has 13,000 franchised and leased hotels, 4.5 lakh rooms, and is adding over 64,000 rooms per month worldwide.
  • In India, Oyo has 8,700 leased and franchised hotels, and 164,000 rooms.
  • Currently, the company is present in 7 countries and plans to expand to 15 countries with a focus on Asian countries.
  • The company is expected to announce a corporate growth plan focusing on Asia and Japan, where it aims to become the largest player by 2020 Summer Olympics.

Oyo is also proposing a digital record system to enable direct data sharing of customers’ arrivals and departures with several state government. State governments of Haryana, Telangana, and Rajasthan have shown interest in the system. Oyo has offered to maintain a real-time data repository called, ‘Digital Arrival and Departure Register’ for the West Bengal government.