flipkart

Ecommerce player Flipkart has confirmed that it has raised $700 million in a fresh round of funding. The development was first reported by the Economic Times in July, but at the time the company had declined to comment on the development. With this round, it takes the valuation of the company to $15.2 billion.

The Economic Times report added that Tiger Global and existing investors including Steadview Capital participated in the fundraise. Flipkart co-founders Sachin Bansal’s and Binny Bansal’s holdings of about 8.5% each in India’s most valuable online marketplace are now worth more than $1 billion. It’s worth noting that Sachin and Binny Bansal a few days ago made it to the Forbes Indian billionaires list and debuted at number 86 with a net worth of $1.3 billion.

Previous rounds of funding and IPO

So far, Flipkart has raised $3.2 billion in 12 rounds of funding. The company had previously raised $700 million in December 2014 from a clutch of investors, and with the number of shareholders exceeding 50. The ecommerce player had raised $1.91 billion in last year alone. It’s worth noting that Tiger Global has invested in every single round since it first invested in Flipkart in 2010. DST Global has invested in three rounds this year, and in every round since it first invested earlier this year.

Naspers also mentioned that at the end of March 2015, it holds about 15.83% interest in ecommerce player Flipkart on a fully diluted basis. The company  participated in two funding rounds in Flipkart last year. These funding rounds, during May and August 2014, resulted in additional investments of 555 million Rand and 2.67 billion Rand respectively, in cash.

Flipkart has clarified that conversion to a public company is a statutory requirement, once the number of shareholders exceeds 50, and says this is “no way indicative of any upcoming IPO or of any corporate activity that the company is engaged in either in Singapore or any other part of the world.”

Other developments

– Earlier this month, it was reported that Flipkart exited the ebooks market. The development was first noted last month by Alliance of Independent Authors (Alli), a global non-profit for writers who self publish.

– Around the same time, the company acquired majority stake for Rs 45.4 crore in FX Mart. Flipkart disclosed the terms of the deals in the registrar of companies filings. The move will help Flipkart offer digital wallet services on its app as FX Mart holds a prepaid payments instrument licence from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI).

– In August, Flipkart accelerated moving to its app-only model. The company made certain items on its platform available only on the app. The Flipkart website displays a message which states that “Some products on this page are available only on the Flipkart App.”

– In June, Flipkart launched an app for sellers called the ‘Seller Hub‘. The app is available for free to all users, however a seller’s registration on Flipkart is required to use it. As of now, the app is only available for Android users. The app lets sellers get alerts on new orders, update stock count and pricing on listings and monitor payments and return.