They know how to pick their battles. When Google Maps made inroads into India after its launch in February 2005, MapMyIndia (MMI) owners Rakesh and Rashmi Verma had a choice: to concentrate on the enterprise segment or take on the tech giant and burn cash with a 50-50 chance of success. The Vermas, who founded the digital mapping product company in 1992, chose the enterprise segment, and rest, as they say, is a thriving business.
They have gone strong on partnerships as well. “If you had asked me two years back if MapMyIndia has a chance in the consumer segment, my answer would be no,” says Sanchit Vir Gogia, founder, Greyhound Research, a tech consultancy firm.
Over the last two years, the company has come a long way in forming partnerships and expanding its developer ecosystem through its application programming interface (API), similar to what Google has done but at a smaller scale, he says. The hyperlocal nature of data and its accuracy has served the company well.
APIs and partnerships are the other revenue streams but Google leads these spaces. MMI needs more data and it can be done by extending partnerships to last-mile connectivity, allowing on share real-time traffic data, Gogia says.
The company, so far, has not been able to nail it, experts say.
While companies may use MMI, drivers and delivery staff are more comfortable with Google Maps, a force of habit that is hard to change. A lot of work needs to be done here, Gogia says.moneycontrol
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