According to sources, Softbank — the largest shareholder in Snapdeal– has been successful in getting Kalaari to agree to the deal but is yet to get Nexus Venture Partners on board for the same. (Reuters)
Japan’s SoftBank is hopeful of getting a nod soon from co-investor Nexus Venture Partners to sell Snapdeal to India’s largest e-commerce firm Flipkart. According to sources, Softbank — the largest shareholder in Snapdeal– has been successful in getting Kalaari to agree to the deal but is yet to get Nexus Venture Partners on board for the same.
This should come through in the next one or two weeks and the deal may get announced next month, they added. SoftBank, Kalaari and Nexus did not respond to e-mails sent to them.
Jasper Infotech’s (which operates Snapdeal) seven-member board includes representation from investors SoftBank, Kalaari Capital and Nexus Venture Partners, as well as co-founders Kunal Bahl and Rohit Bansal.
The deal, if completed, would mark the biggest acquisition in the Indian e-commerce space and change the landscape of the sector that is witnessing intense competition among players.
Nexus and Kalaari were early stage investors in Snapdeal. Sources had highlighted valuation as one of the hurdles in the deal, as Kalaari Capital and Nexus were not in agreement with the valuation given by Snapdeal’s largest shareholder, SoftBank.
With Kalaari in tow now, SoftBank needs Nexus’ approval to take the deal through. Snapdeal was valued at $6.5 billion in its last funding round in February 2016. The valuation, however, has shrunk since then and the potential deal could be struck at a discounted rate.
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Indian e-commerce companies have seen funding dry up over the last few months as investors are focussing extensively on profitability and rationalisation of expenses.
With intense competition from deep-pocketed global rivals like Amazon, companies like Flipkart and Snapdeal could face more heat in the coming days.
According to reports, the deal may see Snapdeal’s mobile wallet service, Freecharge being sold separately and players like Paytm, Flipkart and MobiKwik are in the fray.