TOI reported in its March 28 edition that SoftBank is looking to plough around $1-1.5 billion in fresh capital into Flipkart while subsequently merging the beleaguered operations of Snapdeal with theBengaluru e-tailer.
Snapdeal, which owns FreeCharge, is itself being sold to rival Flipkart in a deal brokered by its largest shareholder SoftBank, in a stock transaction, now pegged at $750 million. Softbank reported its annual report for the financial year that ended in March of 2017 on 10 May.
Besides Snapdeal and Ola, SoftBank is also an investor in hotel booking platform Oyo Rooms, e-grocer Grofers, and Housing (which it sold to PropTiger last year). But things may change now, said analysts. The valuation, however, has shrunk since then and the potential deal could see the embattled e-commerce firm being valued at about $1 billion, said market watchers.
Betting heavily on the growing e-commerce sector in India, SoftBank invested about $900 million in Snapdeal. "This situation caused a material decrease in net asset value of Starfish as of March 31, 2017, and therefore SBG impaired the carrying amount of its shares in the company to the amount equivalent to its net asset value", the statement says.
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SoftBank is the largest investor in cab-hailing app Ola and e-commerce marketplace Snapdeal.
If completed, the deal would mark the rise of the country's own representative in India's ecommerce battlefield, which features deep-pocketed rivals Amazon and Alibaba. There has never been a better time for SoftBank - the orchestrator of the merger - to push through with the deal.
However, SoftBank said that there was no impact of the loss on the company's consolidated financial results in 2016-17.
The seven-member board of Jasper Infotech (which operates Snapdeal) includes representation from investors SoftBank, Kalaari Capital and NVP, as well as co-founders Kunal Bahl and Rohit Bansal.
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Further, in the last week of April, the news came out that internet giant SoftBank was all set to invest over $1.4 billion in Paytm. "Loss on financial instruments at fair value through profit or loss was ¥160,419 million (approximately Rs 9,000 crore) as compared to a gain of ¥114,377 million (around Rs 7,000 crore) in the previous fiscal", SoftBank said in a filing.
Valued at $6 billion mid of past year, the company has been going through very challenging times since the last 8-10 months as it could not raise funds.
The company had previously written down as much as 58.1 billion yen ($555 million) in the same companies for the six-month period ending September 30, 2016.
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