Indian eCommerce startup Flipkart raises $1.2 billion in funding led by Walmart; now valued at $24.9 billion
Another day, another billion dollars investment in technology startups. Today, Indian e-commerce startup Flipkart announced it has raised $1.2 billion in funding led by majority owner Walmart Inc as India emerges from the Covid-19 crisis. The new funding will help Flipkart to better compete with Amazon in a coronavirus-hit market.
The latest funding, which now values Flipkart at $24.9 billion post-money valuation, is also backed by other existing shareholders. The announcement comes two years after U.S. retail giant Walmart paid $16 billion for a more than 70% stake in Flipkart. However, the 13-year old startup appears to be struggling. Back in May, Walmart said that Flipkart had a “significant sales decline.” in April.
Founded in 2007, the Flipkart Group includes Flipkart, digital payments platform PhonePe, fashion specialty site Myntra and eKart, a logistics and delivery service focused on solving the last mile in India’s Tier II and Tier III cities. In 2018, Walmart Inc. invested $16 billion for a majority stake in the group.
“We’re grateful for the strong backing of our shareholders as we continue to build our platform and serve the growing needs of Indian consumers during these challenging times,” Flipkart CEO Kalyan Krishnamurthy said. “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 share in other general merchandise categories and grocery, all while providing increasingly seamless payment and delivery options
for our customers. We will continue innovating to bring the next 200 million Indian shoppers online.”
Flipkart said it would use the funds, to be received in two tranches this fiscal year, to support the “development of its e-commerce marketplace as India emerges from the COVID-19 crisis.”
Coronavirus-induced lockdowns restricted business activities in India for much of April and May. India is currently grappling with a surge in infections, making it the third worst-hit nation behind Brazil and the United States.