Flipkart, Paytm bosses invest in Rahul Yadav’s firm
Housing.com’s co-founder and former CEO Rahul Yadav, who had to leave the firm after skirmishes with investors, is back in business. Startup icons like the Bansals of Flipkart and Vijay Shekhar Sharma of Paytm have invested in Yadav’s new venture, Intelligent Interfaces Private Ltd, which is looking to offer virtual reality applications to help government departments function more efficiently.
Virtual Reality creates an artificial environment by using software, and is presented in a manner that looks real, and can be experienced using senses of sound and sight. Talks with the government are still going on, but the new investors are bound to buoy Yadav’s new venture. Apart from Sachin Bansal and Binny Bansal of Flipkart and Paytm’s Sharma, they include cricketer Yuvraj Singh’s You We Can Ventures.
Yadav’s co-founder is Azeem Zainulbhai, who was his colleague at Housing. Yadav holds 90% stake in the company, while Zainulbhai is the second-largest shareholder. To finalise the deal, Yadav and Zainulbhai held a meeting at Flipkart’s office in Bangalore with all the investors.
“My battery is running low and I have to make a few important calls. I will be able to talk about this in detail in the coming days,” Yadav told HT over the phone.
While, not much details was available on exactly what Intelligent Interfaces will offer, it is expected to bring out some video applications based on aggregation of data, which will aim to make government functioning better. In the agreement with investors, the description of the business is stated as: “Intelligent Interfaces will provide intelligent data aggregation and visualisation solutions to the Government of India. We believe that our visual solutions will allow departments, ministries and projects to be governed 100 times more efficiently than they are today.”
This is the second time Yadav is building a company around a larger problem. At Housing he wanted to solve India’s real estate buying and rental woes by using location-based mapping, availability of rooms and other specific parameters. But, due to fall out with investors he resigned twice, before being finally sacked by Housing’s Board.
Over the past few months, Yadav has been talking to government officials to understand the problem areas of governance.
The agreement also states: “We have confirmed this by speaking to various stakeholders (generally senior) within the government. About a dozen of these folks will be joining our advisory board.”