Former Housing CEO Jason Kothari joins Snapdeal as chief investment officer

Snapdeal, run by Jasper Infotech Pvt. Ltd, Wednesday named former Housing.com chief executive officer (CEO) Jason Kothari as its chief strategy and investment officer. Kothari stepped down from his role at the Mumbai-based Locon Solutions Pvt. Ltd, which runs Housing.com, after the company merged with PropTiger on Tuesday. In his new role, Kothari will oversee investments and strategic partnerships. He will lead Snapdeal’s fund-raising efforts and manage all its portfolio companies. He will join on 16 January.

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Paytm parent One97 Communications set to raise over $1.8 billion from SoftBank

One97 Communications, owner of electronics payments provider Paytm, is set to raise more than Rs 120 billion ($1.87 billion) from Japan's SoftBank Group, the Economic Times reported on Friday citing sources. The deal will value Noida-based One97 at about $9 billion and provide a 20 percent stake to SoftBank, the report said.

Moreover, One97 plans to earmark nearly $1 billion to expand its payments business into high growth areas like lending and insurance, the report added.
SoftBank declined to comment. Paytm was not immediately reachable for comment.
Digital payments have assumed great significance in India after the decision of Prime Minister Narendra Modis government ban on old high-valued bank notes in November led to a severe cash crunch across the country.

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BMW to be Aditya Birla groups premium vehicle partner globally

German luxury carmaker BMW Group today announced a partnership with Aditya Birla Group under which it will supply premium vehicles to the Indian business house’s global operations. BMW Group will be the preferred premium mobility supplier for Aditya Birla Group across 50 countries and over 70 companies internationally, the company said in a statement.

Besides India, the agreement will cover countries such as Italy, Spain, Switzerland, Belgium, Germany, Austria, France and UK where Aditya Birla Group has operations, it added. As part of the pact, BMW will offer privileges on its products such as preferential pricing, customised financial services and aftersales support to Aditya Birla Group.

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Flights cheaper than taxis: PM Modi launches UDAN scheme, flags off first flight on Shimla-Delhi sector

Making flying easier and affordable for the common man, PM Narendra Modi on Thursday launched the UDAN (Ude Desh Ka Aam Nagrik) scheme. He flagged off first UDAN flight under Regional Connectivity Scheme, on Shimla-Delhi sector. Inaugural UDAN flights on Kadapa–Hyderabad, and Nanded-Hyderabad sectors were also flagged off by him. Stating that the aviation sector in India is filled with opportunities, he said that lives of the middle-class are being transformed and their aspirations are increasing. He also added that earlier aviation was considered to be the domain of a select few but that is changing now.

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