Walmart, the world’s largest retailer, is set to sign a deal with Indian largest e-commerce company Flipkart to acquire 80% stake in the company, reports quoting unidentified officials said. The deal, when finalised, will confirm India’s status as the largest emerging e-commerce market with Walmart, Amazon and China’s Alibaba competing for the consumers’ attention.
The deal will also give the global giant exposure to India’s growing e-commerce market after its failed attempts to make inroads in markets outside the United States. There is speculation that Alphabet, Google’s parent company, may also pick up a stake in the Bengaluru-based company. The deal will also give Flipkart an edge over its key rival, Amazon.
Walmart, Flipkart and Alphabet are yet to comment on the matter.
According to Flipkart’s filing with Singapore’s Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority, the company bought back over 1.8 million shares worth more than $350 million from minority investors valuing the company at $17.69 billion.
A source said that Flipkart’s current Chief Executive Officer Kalyan Krishnamurthy will retain his post, The Times of India reported. “The exact shareholding pattern would emerge only in the next 24 hours as Binny and Krishnamurthy are leading Flipkart’s final negotiation,” the official said. Right now the legalities on the deal are being worked out,” a person familiar with the deal said.
Flipkart was rated the third-most funded private company in the world after it secured over $7 billion from major investors including Softbank, Tiger Global and DST Global. The firm, founded by Indian Institute of Technology-Delhi alumni Sachin Bansal and Binny Bansal in 2008, is considered to be one of the most successful firms in the country.