Snapdeal co-founders Kunal Bahl and Rohit Bansal are on a disaster-management spree. After calling off the merger with Flipkart, negotiations for which had been on for half a year, the struggling online marketplace is said to be slashing over 80 percent of its workforce, and pivoting as 'Snapdeal 2.0' in the months to come. In order to pacify unnerved employees, CEO Bahl wrote an email announcing that Snapdeal 2.0 will emerge as the "champion of all sellers" within a year, and clock profits of Rs 150 crore. The email has been accessed by ET.
Snapdeal, which has just called off its merger with Flipkart, is going through a massive resizing. The struggling online marketplace now wants to run a leaner, meaner version ('Snapdeal 2.0') of the organization, and will lay off close to 80 percent of its workforce, ANI reports. A top official told the news agency that department heads were instructed to prepare a list of people who would be asked to leave. At present, Snapdeal has about 1,200 employees. If the Gurgaon-based firm goes through with its decision, it would be left with about 200 employees only.
Less than a week after reports suggested that Snapdeal had accepted Flipkart's $900 million buyout offer, things have reversed. The Gurgaon-based online marketplace has called off the Flipkart merger. This development was first reported by ET which said that a crucial meeting between the legal and financial representatives of both firms had been called off on Monday. The meeting was meant to have closed the final transaction. But Snapdeal founders wanted to pursue an "independent path" and run a leaner, meaner version of the erstwhile company.
Waving a teary goodbye to Apple iPod shuffle and nano, another week in the world of technology drew to a close. The week was an interesting one with the anticipation of the upcoming flagships intensifying. In fact, there were quite a few new launches that we saw this week, right from the Moto Z2 Force in the US to the Xiaomi Mi 5X in China. Xiaomi also announced the Mi AI speaker in its home market, which is a direct competition to Apple HomePod and Google Home. While the flagship and premium phone race continued, the news of a few demises broke as well. Beside the goodbyes that we said to the iPod shuffle and nano, Adobe announced that Flash would be killed by 2020, and Microsoft bid goodbye to MS Paint (albeit briefly).
After weeks of speculation and several suitors, Freecharge has been acquired by India's third-largest private lender, Axis Bank, for about $60 million. The digital wallet service was put up for sale about half a year ago by parent Snapdeal, which itself is scouting for a potential buyer. Snapdeal had bought Freecharge in 2015 for an estimated $400 million. Market leader Paytm too was in the running to buy Freecharge, but Axis Bank offered a better deal.
After weeks of dilly-dallying, Snapdeal is said to have finally accepted rival Flipkart's $900-950 million buyout offer. This comes shortly after reports emerged that Snapdeal founders were considering selling out to Infibeam so that they could retain control over the company. The board of Jasper Infotech, which owns Snapdeal, has gone ahead with Flipkart, according to Reuters. The deal is currently awaiting approval from Snapdeal's shareholders.
The impending Snapdeal sale hasn't been short of theatrics with several performers playing cameos intermittently. We still don't know who the star performer is though. It's been half a year since the struggling online marketplace started looking for a buyer who could pick up its e-commerce unit (Snapdeal), its logistics arm (Vulcan Express) and its payments solution (Freecharge) which Snapdeal had acquired in 2015 for $400 million.
There is a new twist in the tale of Indian e-commerce's most awaited marriage. The Flipkart-Snapdeal merger has hit another roadblock it seems. A Mint report claims that Snapdeal founders Kunal Bahl and Rohit Bansal either want to stay independent or merge with Infibeam Flipkart rival and the country's only publicly listed e-commerce firm. However, Snapdeal's largest investor Softbank, which actually triggered the merger conversations back in April, is still pushing for a Flipkart buyout.
The week gone by was definitely an interesting one from the tech perspective. Filled with a lot of launches in the smartphone as well as the app space, the week did not have any boring moments. While news around Apple iPhone 8, Google Pixel 2 and Samsung Galaxy Note 8 continued to dominate attention, there were also leaks surrounding other devices. Google too made a lot of announcements, from revamping the very traditional search page to announcing a new Events feature. The highlight of the week was undoubtedly the Reliance Jio JioPhone launch.
Flipkart has revised its initial buyout offer to Snapdeal two weeks after the Gurgaon-based online marketplace rejected it on accounts of undervaluation. Flipkart has reportedly extended a fresh $850 million offer to Snapdeal. Another report pegged the new offer at $900 million. Whatever the value, it is significantly higher than its initial offer of $550 million, and will cover Snapdeal's marketplace, its logistics arm (Vulcan Express), and online order management business (Unicommerce eSolutions).
E-commerce major Flipkart is expected to make a revised offer of $900-950 million for buying rival Snapdeal, according to sources. The new offer almost matches the initial asking price of $1 billion for the acquisition of the beleaguered e-commerce marketplace, sources privy to the development said. They did not wish to be identified as discussions are still on and the deal has not been signed yet.
Just a day after Snapdeal rejected Flipkart's offer over undervaluation, a new report has emerged indicating there will be a refreshed acquisition proposal. After conducting due diligence on Snapdeal over a course of eight weeks, Flipkart made the $800-900 million offer to Snapdeal. However, the latter rejected the offer as it wanted a higher valuation.
That India is one of Amazon's prime markets globally is well-known. The Seattle-based e-commerce giant has made sustained investments in India since it entered the market in 2013, and is now the country's second-largest online retailer trailing only Flipkart. The company has reportedly made another fund infusion, this time in its core local unit Amazon Seller Services, thus taking its overall investment in India to $2 billion.
Struggling online marketplace Snapdeal which has been in talks with Flipkart for a buyout has reportedly rejected the latter's $800-900 million offer on grounds of undervaluation. Flipkart, India's leading e-commerce player, was conducting due diligence on Snapdeal over the last eight weeks. It had appointed global consulting firm Ernst & Young for the purpose. With "no major red flags" raised by Flipkart, Snapdeal wanted a higher valuation, ET reported.
Up till now, whenever you placed an order on Amazon India, on a purchase of Rs 499 or more, no over and above delivery charge was applied. However, the e-commerce platform has very quietly increased the minimum order amount for a free delivery. Without any prior warning or notice, Amazon has increased the minimum amount by Rs 100. Which means, now, only on a purchase worth Rs 599 or more, will your delivery charges be waived off. For orders below Rs 599, an additional cost of Rs 50 will be charged for delivery.
Beleaguered online retailer Snapdeal continues to lose members from top leadership, the latest to join the list being its Human Resources Head Saurabh Nigam. Nigam's exit comes amid talks of a potential sale of the e-commerce firm to larger rival Flipkart. A Snapdeal spokesperson confirmed the development. "After spearheading Snapdeal's Human Capital function for more than three years, Saurabh Nigam has decided to move on to pursue further career interests in a field close to his heart," the spokesperson said in an emailed response.
Online marketplace Snapdeal announced that it has crossed 50 million downloads on the Google Play Store. "Achieving the milestone figure of 50 million downloads is a sure sign that more and more users are seeing value in the experience we provide," said Rajiv Mangla, Chief Technology Officer, said in a statement.
Snapdeal has raised over Rs. 113 crores from early investor Nexus Venture Partners and founders Kunal Bahl and Rohit Bansal, amid talks of a potential sale of the e-commerce firm to larger rival Flipkart. NVP pumped in Rs. 96.26 crores in the round, while Bahl and Bansal contributed Rs. 8.45 crores each, according to a regulatory filing with the Ministry of Corporate Affairs.
Since the time demonetization has hit India, digital and cashless transactions have grown, and so has mobile wallet platforms like Paytm and Freecharge. With more than 8.5 million daily transactions on its platform and with an aim to soon overtake card transactions in the country, the Vijay Shekhar Sharma-owned company has moved a step further and has signed a non-exclusive term sheet to acquire Freecharge. The company now aims to take its biggest competitor down.