Merchant marketing and hyperlocal deal discovery platform Mydala is in talks with Meituan-Dianping to raise $80-$100 million. The Gurugram-based company has also held two rounds of preliminary discussion with the world’s fourth-largest valued company while the latter’s CEO visited India.
Wang Xing, CEO of Meituan-Dianping, along with the company’s delegation was on a visit to India and met several startups, including Housejoy, Dailyhunt and Swiggy, amongst a few others.
“Mydala’s co-founder and CEO Anisha Singh met Xing and key lieutenants of Meituan-Dianping twice during the recently concluded tour by Meituan delegation,” claimed two sources privy to the discussion.
The Info Edge-backed company was earlier scouting $100-$120 million fund infusion from China’s biggest internet search company, Baidu. However, it seems the deal didn’t come to fruition.
Entrackr has sent queries to Meituan-Dianping and Mydala, however, they didn’t respond at the time of publication of this post. We’ll update the post as responses come in.
The current discussion with Meituan is in an initial stage and may take two-three months to get through, adds one of the sources, on condition of anonymity. The sources also indicate that Mydala is eyeing the valuation of $140-160 million.
The Meituan delegation was also slated to meet Flipkart, however, the scheduled meeting got cancelled at the last moment for some unknown reason.
Meituan-Dianping is exploring strategic investments in startups across various verticals in O2O space. It had recently participated in $100 million Series F round in Bengaluru-based food delivery startup Swiggy.
Backed by Tencent, Meituan-Dianping is eyeing two-three strategic investments in India this year. “The Meituan delegation wasn’t only a usual educational trip. They are certainly eyeing to source some meaningful deals. However, like Alibaba (that took 6-8 months negotiation before making the investment into Zomato and BigBasket), Meituan will also take time in due diligence,” explained one of the aforementioned sources.
Meituan is also expected to make joint investments in India with Tencent.
Alibaba-backed Paytm has consolidated hyperlocal deal space in the country by acquiring Little and Nearbuy in distress sale. The upside for the deal discovery platforms is limited as they fail to source meaningful deals for customers. Fundamentally, deal platforms in India weren’t aggregating what consumers search and crave for.
Meanwhile, hyperlocal deal, food delivery, and home services collectively have been a massive business in China. Alibaba and Tencent have placed their bets on Ele.Me and Meituan-Dianping, respectively.