All posts in “Walmart”

Indian PM Narendra Modi’s reelection spells more frustration for US tech giants

The re-election of Modi will in many ways chart the path of India’s burgeoning startup ecosystem, the local play of Silicon Valley companies, and future of India’s internet

Amazon and Walmart’s problems in India look set to continue after Narendra Modi, the biggest force to embrace the country’s politics in decades, led his Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party to a historic landslide re-election on Thursday, reaffirming his popularity in the eyes of world’s largest democracy.

The re-election, which gives Modi’s government another five years in power, will in many ways chart the path of India’s burgeoning startup ecosystem, and the local play of Silicon Valley companies that have grown increasingly wary of recent policy changes.

At stake is also the future of India’s internet, the second largest in the world. With more than 550 million internet users in India, the nation has emerged as one of the last great growth markets for Silicon Valley companies. Google, Facebook, and Amazon count India as one of their largest and fastest growing markets. And until late 2016, they enjoyed great dynamics with the Indian government.

But in recent years, New Delhi has ordered more internet shutdowns than ever before; and puzzled many over crackdowns on sometimes legitimate websites. To top that, the government recently proposed a law that would require any intermediary — telecom operators, messaging apps, and social media services among others — with more than 5 million users to introduce a number of changes to how they operate in the nation. More on this shortly.

Growing tension

DoorDash, now valued at $12.6B, shoots for the moon

More than five years ago, Sequoia partner Alfred Lin called Tony Xu, the founder of a small on-demand delivery startup called DoorDash, to say he was passing on the company’s seed round.

This was, of course, before venture capital funding in food delivery startups had taken off. DoorDash, launched out of Xu’s Stanford graduate school dorm room, wasn’t worth Sequoia’s capital — yet.

Today, venture capitalists are valuing the San Francisco-based company at a whopping $12.6 billion with a $600 million Series G. New investors Darsana Capital Partners and Sands Capital participated in the deal, which nearly doubles DoorDash’s previous valuation, alongside existing backers Coatue Management, Dragoneer, DST Global, Sequoia Capital, the SoftBank Vision Fund and Temasek Capital Management.

As for Sequoia’s Alfred Lin, he realized his mistake years ago and jumped in on DoorDash’s 2014 Series A, and has participated in every subsequent round since. DoorDash, a graduate of Y Combinator’s Summer 2013 cohort, is also backed by Kleiner Perkins, CRV and Khosla Ventures, among others. In total, the company has raised $2.5 billion in VC funding, making it one of the most well-capitalized private companies in the U.S.

SoftBank, via its prolific dealmaker Jeffrey Housenbold, was responsible for making DoorDash a unicorn in early 2018. The nearly $100 billion Vision Fund led DoorDash’s $535 million Series D, valuing the business at $1.4 billion. Just three months ago, the SoftBank Vision Fund, DST Global, Coatue Management, GIC, Sequoia and Y Combinator put an additional $400 million in the fast-growing business.

SAN FRANCISCO, CA – SEPTEMBER 05: DoorDash CEO Tony Xu speaks onstage during Day 1 of TechCrunch Disrupt SF 2018 at Moscone Center on September 5, 2018 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Kimberly White/Getty Images for TechCrunch)

Xu told TechCrunch the company’s Series F was “a reflection of superior performance over the past year.” DoorDash was currently seeing 325% growth year-over-year, he said, pointing to recent data from Second Measure showing the service had overtaken Uber Eats in the U.S., coming in second only to GrubHub.

“I think the numbers speak for themselves,” Xu said at the time. “If you just run the math on DoorDash’s course and speed, we’re on track to be number one.”

At a venture capital-focused summit hosted in April, Xu added that DoorDash was the largest delivery platform in America by “pretty wide margins,” explaining that it was, in fact, growing 4x faster than its next closest peer. In this morning’s announcement, the company added that it’s grown 60% since its late February Series F, with its annualized total sales hitting $7.5 billion in March, an increase of 280% year-over-year. 

Still, one wonders what kind of growth metrics DoorDash might be sharing to attract that kind of valuation multiple. The company has yet to disclose revenues and is not yet profitable, but has seen its price tag grow astronomically in just two years. Since March 2018, DoorDash’s valuation has skyrocketed from $1.4 billion to $4 billion with a $250 million Series E to $7.1 billion with a $350 million Series F and, finally, to nearly $13 billion with its Series G.

The $12.6 billion valuation makes DoorDash one of the 10 most valuable venture-backed companies in the U.S., surpassing Coinbase, Instacart and even Slack, according to PitchBook.

DoorDash is currently active in more than 4,000 cities in the U.S. and Canada, with hundreds of partners, including both restaurants and supermarkets (Walmart is using DoorDash for grocery deliveries). The company also operates DoorDash Drive, which allows businesses to use the DoorDash network to make their own deliveries.

Walmart has a new affordable line of 4K TVs — a 65-inch is under $500

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Rewatch 'Game of Thrones' like the cinematographer intended without dropping $1,000 on an OLED.
Rewatch ‘Game of Thrones’ like the cinematographer intended without dropping $1,000 on an OLED.

Image: onn

This week’s 4K TV news is finally something that everyone can be involved in. Ceilings covered in massive curved OLEDs from LG is cool, but CES tech isn’t exactly available to the average consumer.

There’s a new TV brand in town and its goal is give people the magic of 4K without breaking the bank. Just launched mid-May of 2019, Walmart-exclusive brand ONN has already posed itself as a main competitor to other budget brands like RCA, TCL, and Sceptre.

To celebrate the launch, most models are on sale, and all are available with free shipping or same-day pick up. For less than $500, you can enjoy plasma-like deep blacks, UHD contrast, and clear, immersive imagery — on a 65-inch screen, no less. They’re not smart TVs, but grabbing a Fire TV Stick 4K can fix that.

Image: onn

Here are your options:

Keep in mind that it’s a budget line of TVs — you can’t be expecting $4,000 Sony OLED quality when you paid $400. Hardcore videophiles who can immediately spot the difference between HDR and full HD may want to look elsewhere, but someone who just moved and needs an affordable TV should really consider ONN. Everyone deserves to watch in 4K, but first month’s rent plus a security deposit ain’t cheap.

Shop the entire ONN line and take advantage of the launch sale here.

Online grocery startup Grofers lands $200M led by SoftBank’s Vision Fund

Hot on the heels of Indian delivery startup BigBasket raising $150 million — at a unicorn valuation, no less — so its close rival Grofers has also pulled in capital after it announced a $200 million raise to battle its local competition and international giants Amazon and Walmart.

The round is the largest in India’s online grocery sector to date, and it was led by SoftBank’s Vision Fund, which continues to make major bets on the nation’s growing internet economy. KTB, and existing investors Tiger Global and Sequoia Capital also took part.

Five-year-old Grofers works with more than 5,000 stores in 13 cities in India. In an interview with TechCrunch, Albinder Dhindsa, cofounder and CEO of Grofers, said the startup will use the fresh capital to expand to new markets and bring its service to “hundreds of millions of Indian consumers,” although he didn’t specify exact launch cities.

Dhindsa said that Grofers does not want to expand to new cities for the heck of it. Instead the startup focused on entering a city and growing its business profitable there. Grofers is already profitable in Delhi and will soon be profitable in Kolkata, he said. In Southern Indian markets such as Bengaluru, the startup is working to gain foothold.

The startup is rivaled by a number of players, including BigBasket, which raised its round earlier this month from Mirae Asset-Naver Asia Growth Fund, the U.K.’s CDC Group and Alibaba. The duo also faces competition from hyperlocal player Dunzo, and delivery startup Swiggy, which recently entered this grocery delivery space.

However, more concerning for them is the growing ambitions of Amazon India and Walmart’s Flipkart, both of which are quickly expanding their businesses in India. Amazon’s Pantry and Prime Now services jointly have a presence in more than 100 cities, while Flipkart Group CEO Kalyan Krishnamurthy has publicly expressed an intention to pilot a fresh foods business in the nation. Dhindsa argued that these players are not really a significant competitor to Grofers yet.

The foods and grocery market is growing in India. According to some estimates, it will reach $869 billion in sales in 2023 with digital-based services seen as an important vector for growth. This is likely only the start now that SoftBank’s Vision Fund has entered the space through this deal with Grofers.

Other investments in India from the near-$100 billion fund include budget hotel startup OYO, which has now ventured into Europe, Flipkart — although the fund exited after the Walmart sale — Paytm, and PolicyBazaar. With reports suggesting the fund will open a dedicated office in India, you can bet that there’s a lot more to come.

Floral Pioneer Woman slow cookers are $25 off (again) just in time for your Memorial Day cookout

Just to let you know, if you buy something featured here, Mashable might earn an affiliate commission.
Ree Drummond's slow cooker collab with Hamilton Beach is ridiculously cute.
Ree Drummond’s slow cooker collab with Hamilton Beach is ridiculously cute.

Image: Hamilton Beach / Pioneer Woman

No one wants to be the person responsible for bringing vegetables to a Memorial Day potluck. 

Sure, people may nibble on those carefully cut celery sticks, or plunge a few carrots into your homemade ranch dip, but let’s be real: The veggie platter is never the star of the show. 

Nay, the true cookout glory lies with those responsible for the queso dip, Sloppy Joes, baby-back ribs, and cheesy potato casserole — those guilty-pleasure comfort foods for which everyone needs seconds, thirds, and fourths. 

Of course, if you’re planning on showing up with one of those indulgent dishes, you’re going to need a vessel that can both keep them piping hot and contain their goopy, messy goodness — i.e., a slow cooker. (Or, if you’re in a pinch, an Instant Pot could work, too.) 

We’re partial to the ones designed by food blogger and reality TV star Ree Drummond, who you may or may not know as “the Pioneer Woman” of the eponymous Food Network show. She’s teamed up with the kitchen appliance giant Hamilton Beach to bring you an ultra-adorable, ultra-portable pair of 1.5-quart slow cookers — the perfect size for your favorite dips, sides, desserts, fondues, and finger foods. 

Now, we’ve featured Drummond’s slow cookers here before, but since they’re on sale at Walmart once again, a brief recap of their specs is in order. Each one has three different heat settings: High, low, and keep warm (for when you just want to maintain a dish’s temperature). The crocks themselves are stoneware and come with their own glass lids; both components are dishwasher safe. 

The metaphorical cherry on top of all those features are these slow cookers’ vintage-inspired, country chic floral design — one in navy, and one in green. 

Get this pair of Pioneer Woman slow cookers at Walmart for just $19.99 — 55% off their usual retail price of $44.99.