On Monday, Indian e-commerce giant Flipkart announced it has raised USD 3.6 Billion in the latest round of financing that was led by GIC, Softbank Vision Fund 2, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, and Walmart. The new round of funding is one of the largest financing round for any Indian startup until now and the round is considered as the pre-IPO round for the Indian e-commerce company as it plans to go public early in the next year.
Walmart-owned Flipkart announced it would be using the newly acquired funds to focus on speeding-up the growth and development of millions of small and medium businesses in India, including kiranas. The Bangalore-based e-commerce firm vies with e-commerce giant Amazon in India, with both the firms competing aggressively to gain a robust footing in the country. The current round has taken up the valuation of the firm at a whopping USD 37.6 Billion, giving it tremendous firepower to establish a strong foothold against Amazon and Tata Digital Reliance in India. Flipkart announced it keeping investing deeper in manpower, technology, infrastructure, and supply chain, to cater to the growing demand of the rapidly expanding consumer base in the country. Through the ever-expanding grocery and last-mile delivery programs, the Group – including Flipkart, EKart, PhonePe, and Myntra – will also be working with kiranas, helping them rapidly digitize their businesses and expand footprint in the market. According to Flipkart’s CEO, Kalyan Krishnamurthy, Flipkart will invest in broader sections and will take maximum advantage of made-in-India technology to enhance their customer experience and develop a robust supply chain network. Flipkart has over 350 million registered users across its services in the country. It is now preparing for a public listing in the United States next year. The new investment round included funding from a cluster of globally renowned investors, PEs, sovereign funds, and Walmart, Flipkart’s parent company.
The financing round included investors DisruptAD, Khazanah Nasional Berhad, Tencent, Willoughby Capital, Tiger, Qatar Investment Authority, Antara Capital, and Global Franklin Templeton. This marked the return of Japan’s SoftBank – who had sold majority of its stake in 2018 – as a shareholder in Flipkart.