The body will be called Indiatech.org and will be led by Sachin Bansal, co-founder of Flipkart.

Flipkart Ola come together to form body for protecting interests of local startupsImage for representation
Atom Startups Thursday, September 28, 2017 - 18:47

Homegrown internet companies Flipkart and Ola are coming together with other companies such as MakeMyTrip to launch an industry body to represent the interest of local ventures.

At a time when Flipkart is facing stiff competition from global ecommerce major Amazon and Ola from Uber, this group will act as a shield against global rivals.

As per a report in the Economic Times, the body will be called Indiatech.org and will be led by Sachin Bansal, co-founder of Flipkart. He will be the founding president and chairman.

ET reports that a former IAS officer will be appointed as CEO.

The main purpose of the group is seemingly to persuade the government to support homegrown startups in the local internet ecosystem.

Ola’s Bhavish Aggarwal and Sachin Bansal openly appealed to the government to favour foreign capital but not deep pocketed foreign companies. This is being seen as a cry for help in view of stiff competition from the likes of Amazon and Uber.

There are also startups such as Quikr and Hike that are members of this lobby, which people cited in the ET report say, wants to become the Nasscom of the startup space.

All current members will be a part of the group's executive committee, with more companies expected to join the group, which will be set up as a non-profit organization.

Business Standard reports that the Bansals of Flipkart want the government to favour investment coming into the country from their own backers, such as SoftBank, and not the money, rival Amazon is bringing in. The argument here is that Amazon is using money from the global operations to compete against Flipkart, thus creating an uneven level playing field.

In fact, investors such as Japan's SoftBank, New York-based Tiger Global Management, Hong Kong-based hedge fund Steadview Capital and venture capital firms like Accel India and Matrix Partners India have been invited to be a part of the lobby group.

Indiatech.org is expected to start hiring in the coming week but this has reportedly been in the works for over a year now.

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