Hike’s Kavin Mittal On Why The Super App Model Won’t Work In India
The super app model isn’t the best path forward from a user experience stand point, Mittal said.
The super-app model isn’t the best way forward and won’t work in India, according to Kavin Bharti Mittal.
“We don’t think that the super app model is the best path forward from a user experience stand point as customers want lesser things and many apps to do it,” the founder of Hike told BloombergQuint in an interview. “It can work in a market like China where the market is completely cordoned off, and there is no competition.”
Mittal, whose father founded one of India’s top telecom firms - Bharti Airtel Ltd., said since India has global exposure to companies and technology, smartphones themselves have become the super app.
Hike, which dabbled with messaging, payments and the super-app model, is now betting on a virtual social hangout platform amid the pandemic which has prompted customers to look at virtual platforms to connect with friends and family.
The comments come at a time when India’s leading telecom company Reliance Jio’s investments in content, gaming, messaging and videoconference combined with its recent induction of Facebook and Google as investors have prompted expectations of a super app offering. Recently, the salt-to-software conglomerate Tata Group is said to be building an all-in-one e-commerce application for its swathe of consumer products and services.
Mittal said the ban on Chinese mobile applications has reduced competition for many startups in the content and gaming space, and has also given opportunity for Indian companies to innovate and scale.
“I think it’s a massive boon to the ecosystem,” he said, adding that investment will continue to come from China, but it’s their influence on companies that one should look out for.
“There are some very big companies, very big startups in this country where there’s a very significant Chinese ownership,” Mittal said. “The question is what is the influence of Chinese investors in those companies?”
Watch the full conversation here: