In what is perhaps one of the largest financing rounds for a consumer tech company operating in India, Flipkart said it has raised $3.6 billion at a valuation of $37.6 billion as the e-commerce giant prepares for public listing.
Another headlining feature of this financing round is the re-entry of SoftBank to Flipkart’s cap table. The Japanese investment company had exited Flipkart when it was bought by Walmart in 2018.
In a statement on Monday, the company said that the round was led by GIC, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, SoftBank Vision Fund 2 and Walmart, along with investments from DisruptAD, Qatar Investment Authority, Khazanah Nasional Berhad, Tencent, Willoughby Capital, Antara Capital, Franklin Templeton and Tiger Global.
While Flipkart did not disclose the details of the transaction, SoftBank was in talks to pump in around $300-500 million in the Bengaluru-headquartered company.
Flipkart will use this money to invest in people, technology and supply chain, and infrastructure. The company will also work with grocery stores to help them digitise, the company said in a statement.
Flipkart faces fierce competition from Amazon in the e-commerce segment, and on the grocery delivery front, it has competition from the likes of Tata Digital after it picked up a majority stake in BigBasket, Reliance’s JioMart, food delivery platform Swiggy, and more recently Zomato following its $100 million investment in Grofers.
Flipkart said it has more than 300,000 registered sellers on its platform out of which 60% are from tier 2 cities and beyond. According to the company, it works with more than 1.6 million grocery stores in India through its wholesale business and its last-mile delivery program. Samarth, Flipkart’s program to support small businesses, underserved communities and artisans, has more than 750,000 beneficiaries.
Last month, SoftBank had announced that the total investment through Vision Fund 2 could go up to $4 billion by the end of this year. Since the beginning of this year, it has already invested in Meesho, Zeta and Whatfix and is reportedly in talks to back B2B e-commerce platform OfBusiness, foodtech company Swiggy and edtech unicorn Unacademy in their upcoming funding round.