After lurching from one disaster to another in 2016, Japan’s Softbank is hitting all the right notes this year.
Flipkart, the country’s largest e-commerce marketplace, has received an investment of $2.5 billion from SoftBank Vision Fund, giving it the much-required arsenal to continue in pole position for the next 18-24 months, as it fends off competition from global behemoth Amazon.
SoftBank’s new $93 bn Vision Fund is putting $2.5 bn into online retailer Flipkart, in the biggest private investment to date in India’s technology sector.
Online retailer Flipkart Online Services Pvt. is said to be close to a merger with smaller rival Snapdeal as it looks to fend off Amazon.com Inc. Yet, that may not be enough in a battle with the deep-pocketed American giant that has caught up with the homegrown rival.
The next company that is being greenlighted to enter the prestigious Unicorn club of startups is Oyo Rooms, a SoftBank-backed budget hotel aggregator.
Indian real-estate websites PropTiger.com and Housing.com are merging to create the country’s top portal for residential listings and property services, as Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. boosts its investment in the growing sector while Masayoshi Son’s SoftBank Group Corp. scales back.
Japan’s SoftBank Group Corp. has written down as much as 58.1 billion yen ($555 million) in two of its biggest investments in India, cab-hailing firm Ola (ANI Technologies Pvt. Ltd) and e-commerce marketplace Snapdeal (Jasper Infotech Pvt. Ltd), the company said.