Flipkart raises £2.6 billion in latest funding
In this photograph taken on September 26, 2019, a commuter looks on as a train with advertisements of the upcoming festive sale of an online e-commerce portal featuring Bollywood actor Amitabh Bachchan passes by in Mumbai (Photo: INDRANIL MUKHERJEE/AFP/Getty Images).
INDIAN e-commerce company Flipkart has raised $3.6 billion (£2.6bn) in the latest round of funding, ahead of its likely stock market debut.
The fund-raising increased the value of Flipkart to $37.6bn (£27bn), which is more than double the amount that Walmart paid for a majority stake in Flipkart three years ago.
The Bengaluru-based company is expected to make its stock market debut as early this year.
Flipkart’s chief executive Kalyan Krishnamurthy said the new funds would help in expansion plans.
“As we serve our consumers, we will focus on accelerating growth for millions of small and medium Indian businesses,” he said.
“We will continue to invest in new categories and leverage made-in-India technology to transform consumer experiences and develop a world-class supply chain,” Krishnamurthy added in a company statement.
The funding was led by Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC, the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, Japan’s SoftBank and Walmart. Other investors included sovereign wealth funds from Malaysia, Qatar and Abu Dhabi.
The deal marks the return of SoftBank, which sold its 20 per cent stake in Flipkart to Walmart as part of the 2018 deal.
In 2018, Walmart paid $16bn (£11.6bn) for a 77 per cent stake in Flipkart.
News agency Reuters, reported in September that Flipkart was preparing for an initial public offering outside of India as early as this year.
Since the Walmart deal, Flipkart has added more product categories and increased its warehouse capacity. It competes with Amazon’s Indian operation and Reliance Industries for market share.