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Diageo India invests in payment technology start-up Hip Bar

Diageo India, through its legal entity United Spirits Limited, has acquired a 26% equity stake in HipBar for INR 270 million. Hip Bar Private Limited is a payment technology start-up that serves the needs of the beverage alcohol industry and its consumers with its HipBar Mobile Wallet and Delivery App.

Bartender in India

HipBar unlocks the industry’s need to provide better experiences, promote responsible consumption and digitally connect brands, retail stores and consumers through a common digital platform.

The HipBar app enables age-verified consumers to browse a range of alcoholic beverages, select a brand of their choice and make payment using the mobile wallet to have the product delivered at their doorstep (where permitted) or pick it up from a retail store at their convenience.

HipBar’s stringent age verification process and highly compliant standard operating procedures ensures that the company’s delivery service promotes a safe drinking environment in India.

Founded in 2015, HipBar works closely with the beverage alcohol industry and the government to custom build software and deploy technology projects that will help the category to move forward in a compliant and sustainable manner. 

Some of its digital initiatives include last mile alcohol delivery platform, SaaS based e-governance module for use by Governments, HipBar Point-of-Sale (POS) for standalone licensed retail stores and HipBar Pay for government-controlled retail stores.

Anand Kripalu, CEO and Managing Director, Diageo India said, “At Diageo India, we have been innovating and meeting consumer trends by offering new products and formats. This investment allows us to discover ideas that anticipate shifts in consumer behaviour and enables us to remain at the forefront of trends. We believe that HipBar is creating the right conduit for all players across the industry as it opens up a new and convenient route to reach consumers within the industry’s complex regulatory environment.”

He said HipBar will continue to run as an independent enterprise driven by its founding team.

Prasanna Natarajan, Founder of HipBar said: “We are glad to welcome Diageo India as an investor in HipBar and it shows the industry’s commitment and need for digital transformation. We hope to bring in the global best practices and build sustainable partnerships with governments, the trade and all the players in the industry to drive this category evolution.”