eBay leads $133m Snapdeal investment

NEW DELHI (TIP): Online auction platform eBay is leading yet another round of funding for online marketplace Snapdeal, sparking rumors of a possible buyout. In 2013, eBay lead the first funding round that resulted in an investment of $50 million. The new round is significantly higher and is worth totally around at $133.7 million, which will raise eBay’s stake in Snapdeal.

The U.S.-based firm led a group of investors, including Kalaari Capital, Nexus Venture Partners, Bessemer Venture Partners, Intel Capital and Saama Capital, to invest in the New Delhi-based Snapdeal. After this round of funding, the total investments raised so far by the homegrown online marketplace rose to over $235 million (about Rs.2,457 crore). “We are excited to grow eBay India under a great management team and to invest in the complementary Marketplace Snapdeal.

India is a huge opportunity,” eBay President Marketplaces Devin Wenig said in a Twitter post. “India market growth will accelerate, helped by improvements in payments, delivery, and smartphone penetration. Growing wealth, high acceptance of technology, commerce arbitrage and other factors driving exceptional growth rates in Indian digital commerce,” he added.

In separate statements, eBay and Snapdeal, on Wednesday, said eBay was leading a new $133.77 million round of funding in Snapdeal, raising its stake in the company following an initial investment made in 2013. Accelerating growth in India and other emerging markets continues to be a core strategy for driving eBay’s global ecommerce leadership, eBay Senior VP and APAC Managing Director Jay Lee said. “We continue to invest in Snapdeal due to its complementary business model, good management team and strong brand,” he added. Commenting on the deal, Snapdeal co-founder and CEO Kunal Bahl said: “All our current institutional investors including Kalaari Capital, Nexus Venture Partners, Bessemer Venture Partners, Intel Capital and Saama Capital have participated in this round as well which is a strong endorsement of our team.” With revenues expected to clock $500 million this fiscal ending next month and targeted revenues of $1 billion by March, 2015, Snapdeal is also eyeing a listing on U.S. bourses to raise capital.

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