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Freshly Funded MagicPin is a Gold Mine of Liquor Ban Data

CyberHub bar businesses slow down by close to 50% MagicPin data shows. With its freshly received 7 million dollars, MagicPin can continue to build analytics that even shed light on how knee jerk judiciary bans can affect daily lives of Indians.

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Hyperlocal discovery sites give insight to policymakers and businesses

MagicPin has confirmed today that it has raised 7 million dollars in series B from Lightspeed India Partners; Waterbridge Ventures; Srivatsan Rajan, chairman of Bain and Co., and Sahil Barua, the CEO of logistics startup, Delhivery.

Anshoo Sharma, CEO and cofounder of MagicPin and is an investment veteran who has previously worked at both Lightspeed and Bain. Before MagicPin, Anshoo was the second chief-in-command at Lightspeed’s India team where he spent six years and leading or actively involved in nine investments including Limeroad, Craftsvilla, and Freshmenu. Prior to Lightspeed, Anshoo was at Bain and Co., across its Boston and India offices.

What is MagicPin

Founded in 2015, MagicPin is a discovery and commerce platform, focusing on driving high repeat customer behaviour and providing a hyperlocal marketing channel to its partners (primarily in the F&B and beauty categories). A coalition rewards programme for consumers and a channel for merchants to acquire/engage users is the business proposition core of MagicPin.

MagicPin’s online user community, known as ‘magicians’ are up and about in their city’s neighbourhoods sharing their local experiences through picture stories that inspire other users to have those experiences. For their spending, users get rewarded in ‘MagicPin points’ that can be used to buy more services and experiences at MagicPin partner merchants.

As users submit pictures of their bills at the merchant stores through the MagicPin app to claim their reward points, MagicPin analytics are able to form patterns around spending and even specific products and services being consumed across localities.

MagicPin and the liquor ban

Such data collected from MagicPin while helping partner merchants increase business also provide hard core insights into how knee jerk bans imposed by judiciaries affect the day to day lives of Indians. For example, take that liquor ban issued by the Supreme Courts on April 1.

MagicPin data shows that before the ban Sector 29, Gurugram, did around rupees 60 crore of monthly business and CyberHub did around rupees 40 crore monthly business. In the month of April, sales in Sector 29 had dropped to rupees 52.2 crore; CyberHub sales had dropped to rupees 26.2 crore.

The SC said it was following the Center’s more than decade long instructions to state governments not to issue fresh licenses and remove liquor shops close to national highways. MagicPin data shows a drop in sales in the month of April that hospitality veterans say led to job cuts.

Anshoo, CEO of MagicPin said, “Bars and alcohol serving merchants in both CyberHub and Sector 29 were hit by up to 60 percent lower business in the first week of April due to the ban. Sector 29 however recovered after the first couple of weeks as some of the bars were allowed to operate and recovered to 30 percent lower business compared to March by the end of April. But many of the stores remained closed till end of April and prevented complete recovery.”

Riyaaz Amlani, CEO of Impresario Entertainment and Hospitality (owner of Social brand of restaurants), and President of the National Restaurant Association of India (NRAI) said, “Staff had to be let go during that time. There was the added delay in procuring liquor licenses, so restaurants and bars were in a sticky situation following the decision by the SC. Post that, while things have been limped back to normalcy, the Supreme Court should lend a sympathetic ear if and when the SC decides to review the liquor ban on selling liquor within 500m of highways. Since bans on selling alcohol doesn’t necessarily have any effect on drunk driving, instead it may be time to consider enforcing stricter laws for drunk driving.”

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