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Info Edge denies Mydala acquisition by Chinese search engine Baidu

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Info Edge, which backs coupon site Mydala pare has denied that Baidu, the Chinese search engine, is set to acquire the couponing company. ET had reported that Baidu was looking to buy Mydala for $100 million on 10 November. However, Info Edge said that it is not in any discussions with Baidu for the same.

The ET report cited a Baidu official as saying that the company plans to invest in or acquire companies that will strengthen its position and that it plans to be in India for the long term. According to the report, Baidu has 45 million aggregate monthly active users from India.

Mydala, along with Info Edge’s associate companies Policybazaar, Canvera and Happily Unmarried reported operating revenues of Rs 211.75 crore for 2014-15, up 51.4% from Rs 139.86 crore in 2013-14. The associate companies reported an EBIDTA loss of Rs 74.52 crore for FY15, up 61.5% from Rs 46.15 crore EBIDTA loss in FY14.

Info Edge has invested Rs 27 crore in Mydala till date, including Rs 18 crore in October 2011 and Rs 9 crore in April 2011 and currently owns about 44% in the company.

IRCTC partnership: In May this year, the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) partnered with Mydala to offer deals and offers across categories like food & beverages, beauty, health & wellness, tattoos & retail shopping to its customers. Users would be able to make use of the deals while booking train tickets.

Airtel partnership for recharge deals: Earlier this year, the company had partnered with Airtel to provide deals and offers to its subscribers while recharging their accounts using the ‘My Airtel’ mobile app. At the time, Mydala claimed to have 4 million transacting customers monthly, with over 6.6 million transactions per month. It also claimed to have 50 million unique visitors and 25 million registered users, with 80% of its revenues coming from the mobile platform.

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Grocery vertical: In September last year, Mydala launched a grocery vertical for its website and mobile app. The website claimed that the service would allow shoppers to view offers on grocery items from local kirana stores.

Mydala was founded by Anisha Singh, Arjun Basu and Ashish Bhatnagar in 2009. It offers deals in over 200 cities and claims to have 28 million customers.

Competition:

– In June, Times Internet-owned CouponDunia launched an in-store, hyperlocal couponing system where users would be able to buy items in offline stores using CouponDunia’s coupons in categories like apparel, footwear, accessories, home decor, electronics and gaming among others.

– In August, local coupon and deals platform Groupon raised money from Sequoia Capital in its Indian business Groupon India. Following the fundraise, Sequoia Capital acquired a majority voting interest in the entity.

– In October, Little, the Paytm backed hyperlocal deals marketplace, acquired Trideal, a curated deals marketplace in Chandigarh for an undisclosed amount. Post acquisition, Trideal would be integrated into Little and its cofounders and core team joined Little.

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