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Smile Interactive Buys Mumbai IT Firm; DealsAndYou Gets New CEO

BY  Preethi J
Dealsandyou's other co-founder, Tarun Sobhani, remains with the company as a director with a minority stake.
Guneet Singh, co-founder of Dealsandyou.com, which acquired Wanamo.com earlier this year, has exited the company. Singh, who was in charge of marketing and operations at DealsAndYou, has exercised his option to leave and the exit was of his own choice, Gaurav Kachru, CEO, DealsAndYou, told VCCircle.

Kachru, who was overseeing the business as the head of Smile Group's new business incubation and corporate development and was a financial advisor for the FashionAndYou.com acquisition, has been appointed as its Chief Executive Officer.

Dealsandyou.com's other co-founder, Tarun Sobhani, remains with the company as a director with a minority stake and currently handles sales. Sobhani's role will be expanded and an announcement to that effect will be made next week, Kachru said.

More top management hires can be expected over the coming months. Kachru said, "We needed to beef up the business and are strengthening the team. We will be adding more functional heads and investing in the team." The company is not actively seeking funds, he said.

Wanamo.com's original co-founders are Sampad Swain and Abhishek Shah.

Expansion plans
As CEO of Dealsandyou, Kachru will report to Harish Bahl, Founder and CEO of Smile Interactive Technologies Group. Dealsandyou offers a daily deal on the best stuff to do, see, eat, and buy in 15 cities. This will now grow to include 23 cities by 3Q next year.

Bahl said, “Kachru's in-depth industry knowledge and vast cross-functional experience has brought a lot to the organization. He led the acquisition of Wanamo.com and incubated DealsAndYou.com. We see him playing an essential role in the expansion phase.”

Synergies
On synergies between Fashionandyou.com and Dealsandyou.com, Kachru said, "Since they have common equity shareholders, there is co-operation between businesses and they work closely on some categories." He was unwilling to share more details. The two websites recently collaborated to offer premium fashion shopping deal in group buying. He clarified that there is no merger currently on the cards.

Wanamo.com was founded in November 2009 and was acquired by holding company Group Buying Global AG in June 2010, and Bahl led the merger as the partner. The majority shareholder in the website is Group Buying Global AG, which curiously does not seem to have an online presence. According to Kachru, it is headed by investor duo Dr. Klaus Hommels and Oliver Jung. While Hommels has been involved in Web 2.0 investments such as Skype, Spotify, Xing and Facebook, Jung has invested in Facebook, Xing, Netmoms.de, Brands4friends.de, and Nimbuzz.com.

Meanwhile, Smile Interactive Group acquired a small Mumbai-based IT company Ambab Infotech Pvt Ltd. Set up in 2007, the company is specialized in website development, e-commerce, risk management consultancy, and web/ brand portals, according to its website. The acquisition was completed last month.

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