Tata eyes majority stake in BigBasket
The Tata group is in active discussions to take a controlling stake in BigBasket by buying out several existing investors of the online grocer, three people directly aware of the talks said.
If the talks are successful, Tata group could pay around $500-700 million in cash to a clutch of financial investors, mainly private equity funds and China’s Alibaba group, BigBasket’s largest investor, the people said, requesting anonymity
“The talks are currently hinged on the extent of say Tata group will have in the company post the deal,” said one of the three people. “While BigBasket’s existing investors are not averse to the idea of selling a controlling stake to Tata group, they also want the current management, led by the founders, to remain at the helm,” this person said. “Investors also want BigBasket to hit the IPO (initial public offering) market by the next calendar year, irrespective of Tata’s coming on board”.
A Tata group spokesperson declined to comment.
The deal, if struck, will give Tata group an immediate head-start to take on the three big players in India’s thriving online grocery marketplace: Reliance Industries Ltd, Walmart-owned Flipkart and Amazon.