Walmart flipkart

Walmart CEO Doug McMillon and Flipkart co-founder and CEO Binny Bansal during a program to announce Walmart Inc.'s acquisition of 77 percent of Flipkart in May in Bengaluru. The Competition Commission of India Aug. 8 approved the acquisition. (IANS photo)

Bentonville, Ark.-based Walmart Inc. and Bangalore-based Flipkart Aug. 18 announced the closing of the agreements for Walmart to become the largest shareholder in the Flipkart Group.

“We are poised and ready to deliver the full value of this partnership for India,” said Binny Bansal, Flipkart’s co-founder and group chief executive officer. “By combining Walmart’s omni-channel retail expertise, supply-chain knowledge and financial strength with Flipkart’s talent, technology and local insights, we are confident that together we can drive the next wave of retail in India.”

The Flipkart investment transforms Walmart’s position in a country with more than 1.3 billion people, strong GDP growth, a growing middle class and significant runway for smartphone, internet and eCommerce penetration, the companies said in a news release.

As Walmart scales in India, the company will continue to partner to create sustained economic growth across agriculture, food and retail. Future investments by Walmart will support national initiatives and will bring sustainable benefits in jobs creation, supporting small businesses, supporting farmers and supply chain development and reducing food waste, the companies said.

“Walmart and Flipkart will achieve more together than each of us could accomplish separately to contribute to the economic growth of India, creating a strong local business powered by Walmart,” said Judith McKenna, president and CEO of Walmart International. “Our investment will benefit India by providing quality, affordable goods for customers, while creating new skilled jobs and opportunities for suppliers. As a company, we are transforming globally to make life even easier for customers, and we are delighted to learn from, contribute to and work with Flipkart to grow in India, one of the fastest-growing and most attractive retail markets in world.”

Flipkart’s existing management team will continue to lead the business. Tencent Holdings Limited and Tiger Global Management LLC will remain represented on the Flipkart board, in addition to independent board members, and will be joined by new members from Walmart. The board will work to maintain Flipkart’s core values and entrepreneurial spirit, while ensuring it has strategic and competitive advantages.

With the completion of the investment, Walmart now holds approximately 77 percent of Flipkart. The remainder of the business is held by other shareholders, including Flipkart co-founder Binny Bansal, Tencent, Tiger Global and Microsoft Corp.

Moving forward, Flipkart’s financials will be reported as part of Walmart’s International business segment.

Walmart’s investment includes $2 billion of new equity funding to help accelerate the growth of the Flipkart business. Both companies will retain their unique brands and operating structures in India, the release said.

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