Walmart will invest $1.2 billion in Flipkart
Walmart, the Bentonville, Arkansas-based retail giant, is investing $1.2 billion along with other existing shareholders in Flipkart.
The investment in Flipkart by its parent comes at a time India’s e-commerce segment is seeing increased demand as Covid-19 has forced people to stay indoors.
Rivals Amazon and Reliance Retail have already upped the ante to meet this surge in demand. Reliance plans to expand across the country through JioMart, its online grocery shopping venture. Amazon.com has reportedly invested Rs 2,000 crore into its Indian subsidiary.
In 2018, Walmart Inc had invested $16 billion to buy a 77 per cent stake in the Flipkart group. Tuesday’s investment will see its stake rising in the domestic e-tailer.
A press statement said the present round, which saw participation from a group of existing shareholders, valued Flipkart at $24.9 billion. The statement added that this amount will come in two tranches during this financial year.
“Since Walmart’s initial investment in Flipkart, we have greatly expanded our offer through technology, partnerships and new services. Today, we lead in electronics and fashion, and are rapidly accelerating our share in other general merchandise categories and grocery, while providing seamless payment and delivery options for our customers,” Flipkart CEO Kalyan Krishnamurthy said.
He added that the company will continue innovating to bring the next 200 million Indian shoppers online. Flipkart has a registered customer base of over 200 million and offers over 150 million products across more than 80 categories.
Founded in 2007, the Flipkart Group includes Flipkart, digital payments platform PhonePe, fashion specialty site Myntra and eKart.
In May this year, Flipkart had tied up with a retail store chain, Vishal Mega Mart, for home delivery of essential items in 26 cities in the country, including Delhi-NCR, Bangalore and Calcutta.
Earlier it had tied up with Tata Consumer Products, under which the latter’s distributors were listed as marketplace sellers on its e-commerce platform.
Flipkart is also set to launch a new hyperlocal delivery service.