India’s Flipkart acquires homegrown AR startup Scapic; Aims better virtual customer experience

By Rahul Vaimal, Associate Editor
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In an attempt to boost its immersive shopping experience capabilities for customers, Walmart’s Indian subsidiary Flipkart Group has acquired Augmented Reality (AR) startup Scapic.

As the company accelerates its efforts to have deeper camera experiences, virtual storefronts and new possibilities for brand advertising on its platform, Flipkart will acquire a 100 percent stake in the company and absorb the startup’s team.

Scapic, based in the South Indian city of Bengaluru, is a cloud-based platform that enables Augmented Reality (AR) and 3D content to be created and published, is currently serving eCommerce and marketing clients.

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Kalyan Krishnamurthy
Flipkart Group

“At the Flipkart Group we are focused on providing consumers experiences that make shopping online a seamless and more enjoyable experience. This year has accelerated online adoption—be it education, communication or shopping. As we make investments that focus on developing and nurturing the retail ecosystem, we are also committed to making our platform easier to navigate and richer for consumers in terms of content and experience.”

It is also expected that the acquisition of the three-year-old startup would improve shopping experiences for Flipkart-owned fashion app Myntra, which it acquired in 2014, as well as its social commerce platform, 2GUD, which aims to leverage AR capabilities.

“Customers now require better visuals than ever before. Scapic is building visual technology that brings products to life using Augmented Reality and 3D. Advancements by the Scapic team in the field of AI, Computer Vision and AR have made this change possible. Scapic’s no-code platform helps create immersive experiences across categories such as fashion, furniture & electronics,” said V.K. Sai Krishna and Ajay P.V., co-founders of Scapic, in a statement.

Flipkart, which earlier in July this year picked up $1.2 billion in investment from Walmart-led investor consortium, has been on a shopping spree as it continues to strengthen its presence across retail gaming and invest further in technology enhancements. The Indian eCommerce market is the battleground of the world’s leading players including Jeff Bezos-owned Amazon and Mukesh Ambani led JioMart among others.

Earlier this month, by acquiring local social gaming start-up Mech Mocha for an undisclosed sum, the company expanded its online gaming capabilities. It had funded the startup in 2015, participating in its $1 million seed funding round.

Flipkart has aggressively invested in offline stores over the past few months.
Flipkart also took part in the Series F funding round of Universal Sportsbiz Pvt in November. Universal Sportsbiz owns youth fashion labels such as Ms. Taken, Wrogn and Single.

The company has already made two investments in the fresh produce Ninjacart and also invested in the logistics firm Shadowfax in December 2019.