From Paytm to OYO, these Indian unicorns and soonicorns made the most news in 2019

From Paytm to OYO, these Indian unicorns and soonicorns made the most news in 2019
  • Here are the top unicorns and soonicorns that dominated the headlines in 2019, according to PR technology firm Wizikey.
  • Paytm, Ola, Oyo, Swiggy and Zomato were unicorns that made the most news.
  • Soonicorns like Urbanclap, CRED, Dunzo, Bharatpe and Vedantu were also big newsmakers of the year.
It’s been quite a 2019 for Indian startups – eight new startups have joined the unicorn club and 50 soonicorns are waiting in line. The startup sector has been buzzing with the global WeWork crisis to Oyo’s troubles – there is no dearth of news.

Here are the top unicorns and soonicorns that have been in the news most in 2019, according to PR technology firm Wizikey.

72953372


Advertisement

SEE ALSO:
EXCLUSIVE: India’s top trending business tycoons of 2019, according to Google⁠
{{}}

​Paytm

​Paytm

Vijay Shekhar Sharma led Paytm raised $1 billion in funding, taking its valuation to $16 billion. Another news that put Paytm in the spotlight were reports that it is looking to buy a stake in the troubled YES Bank.

Vijay Shekhar Sharma opens next chapter at Paytm as it raises $1 billion from T Rowe, SoftBank and others

​Ola

​Ola

Indian ride-hailing unicorn Ola shot up in the news circles mainly for the wrong reasons. First, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman blamed Ola and Uber for slowing auto sales. Then, Ola laid off hundreds of employees. Its cab drivers went on strike as Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal banned surge pricing during the odd-even rule.

One of India’s youngest billionaires, Ola’s Bhavish Aggarwal, is talented⁠— but he was also in the right place at the right time


Advertisement

​Oyo

​Oyo

It’s been a year of troubles and troubles only, for Oyo. A lot has been going on with the company from hoteliers complaining of delayed payments; to , cases filed against founder Ritesh Agarwal. Many even predicted a WeWork like crisis in Oyo. The company also made news when Agarwal decided to buy back 15% shares in the company for a whopping $2 billion.

Yahoo ends JV with OYO Life in Japan within 8 months after complaints from real estate owners

Swiggy

Swiggy

Swiggy was in the middle of a fight between food aggregators and the National Restaurant Association of India regarding the rising discounts on offer. The foodtech unicorn also partnered with Google to provide job opportunities through artificial intelligence based recommendations.

From 95 biryanis per minute to Gaumutra, here’s what Indians ordered on Swiggy in 2019


Advertisement

​Zomato

​Zomato

One of India’s foodtech leaders Zomato faced backlash from a logout movement between the NRAI and foodtech startups, for its Zomato Gold programme. Apart from that, Zomato was also in the news when it took a stand and shut down a bigoted customer who refused to take orders from a delivery executive of a different religion.

Oyo, Zomato, Amazon, and Flipkart are chasing growth but the very foundation is shaking

​Urbanclap

​Urbanclap

Listed to be a soonicorn with its last reported valuation standing at $843 million, Urbanclap hit the headlines when it raised $75 million from Tiger Global. The company also expanded to Abu Dhabi. In India, it partnered with the National Skill Development Corporation.


INTERVIEW: Urbanclap claims it can turn profitable in 3 months but it won’t – here’s why

Advertisement

​CRED

​CRED

Kunal Shah’s comeback startup CRED has been in the news since it was founded. The year old startup is already rumoured to be in the soonicorn list. It raised funds twice already in this year alone – $125 million series A round and $120 million series B funding from Sequoia, Ribbit Capital and more.

Bharatpe

Bharatpe

Digital payments startup Bharatpe too was in the news for its multiple funding rounds in a year. It raised $15.5 million in a series A round, followed by a $50 million round in August.

Advertisement

Dunzo

Dunzo

Hyperlocal delivery startup Dunzo has been in the news for multiple reasons. It partnered with Google Pay, raised $45 million amongst others. Dunzo’s losses too grew to ₹169 crores in FY19.

Dunzo lost ₹169 crore last year – Swiggy Go may make this year even tougher

​Vedantu

​Vedantu

Indian edtech startup Vedantu raised $42 million from Tiger Global and Westbridge capital this year. The startup was also in the spotlight as its platform was hacked, exposing data of over 7 lakh users.

Advertisement