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16 Apr 2017

Snapdeal gets two fatal blows among acquisition talks

Amidst acquisition talks, Snapdeal gets hit with two more devastating incidents that could potentially cripple the already faltering home-grown e-commerce giant.

Snapdeal is now getting summoned by court on a complaint that says the entire premise of the start-up was based on a stolen idea, while people are now boycotting Snapdeal mistaking it for Snapchat.

This is not going to be a happy ending.

In context

Snapdeal, in the end everything goes south
An idea that was not their own?


An idea that was not their own?

Snapdeal was built on a simple premise of connecting buyers and sellers online without having any inventory on their own.

Gaurav Dua, an entrepreneur has now moved to the court by saying that CEO Kunal Bahl, COO Rohit Bansal and its erstwhile chief financial officer (CFO) Vijay Ajmera had stolen his idea while fraudulently engaging him under the garb of collaborating.


Dua and his story in the birth of Snapdeal

Gaurav Dua, is one of the early birds in India's e-commerce scene who had created marketsdelhi.com in 1999 and indianretail.net in 2005.

The story according to Dua is that the founders of Snapdeal met him and stole his idea while pretending that they were going to raise venture funds for this non-inventory model of e-commerce retailing which was conceptualized by him.

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Reading through the words slowly


Reading through the words slowly

Dua's complaint reads, ""under the garb of collaboration and funding, held extensive discussions over many months but instead duped him by deploying all criminal tactics to part with the insights and workings of his work done over 10 years."

The firm refuted it by saying, "The allegations made in the revision petition filed by Gaurav Dua are absolutely baseless and devoid of any merit"


Dua tried complaining once before but was quashed

Dua said that he had tried to raise this issue 2 years back by filing an FIR which fell to deaf ears, after which he filed another complaint which was not taken into account and finally this revision petition was filed.

Additional Sessions Judge R K Tripathi taking the complaint into consideration has now summoned Snapdeal honchos to present their case against the accusation.

Goof up

Snapdeal gets the public ire meant for Snapchat

Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel had allegedly said that their app was not meant for "poor countries" like India causing a mass uproar among the Indian citizens.

#BoycottSnapchat started trending among Indian netizens and they started uninstalling the app and giving it poor ratings on Google Store.

However, it appears that the netizens got befuddled and ended up doling out the treatment towards Snapdeal.


Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong

Snapdeal's story is almost at its end with an acquisition on the table and the journey till now has been bitter than a better one.

More devaluation, reluctance in favourable exit terms, further hiccups, right now everything and anything can happen in the Snapdeal story.

As I said earlier, this story may not have a happy ending.

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