Alibaba, the Chinese eCommerce giant with a considerable presence in India as an investor of 2 of the biggest startups in the country, Paytm and Snapdeal, is looking to bet on the logistical startups in the country. According to the leaked media reports, the eCommerce giant is on its spree to complete the ‘iron triangle’ often suggested by its founder, Jack Ma. It is reportedly in talks to buyout or invest in Delhivery and Spressbess Logistics within this year.
Same media reports also suggest that the company is looking to invest more in the marketplace model of Paytm. Alibaba and Ant Financial (Alibaba’s investment arm) already own over 40% equity of Paytm and might plan to take it to another level in the time to come. Furthermore, startups like GoJavas and Ecom express have shown their interest to have a partnership once Alibaba is into the Indian Logistics market.
In a statement, Alibaba made it clear that they were eyeing Indian entry since a while now and with full commitment, the plans are long term. The eCommerce giant is looking to launch its eCommerce portal in India within this year, to compete with the likes of Flipkart, Snapdeal and Amazon.
Some of the key members from Delhivery and Xpressbees met Alibaba’s team which is in India to plan the entry of Alibaba in the Indian subcontinent. The Indian team of Alibaba is led by K Guru Gowrappan (Global MD of Alibaba) and Bharati Balakrishnan.
A source which is closer to the development stated that the company has its plans to buy the eCommerce business of Paytm to start their much hyped service in India. Also, the company plans to build its own logistics network on the likes of flipkart and amazon.
Delhivery, based out of Gurgaon was launched in 2011 by Sahil Barau, Mohit Tandon, Suraj Saharan, Kapil Bharati and Bhavesh Manglani. Backed by investors like Tiger Global Management, Nexus Venture Partners and Times Internet, it was valued at $297 million in the latest series D round when it secured $85 million.
At the same time, Xpressbess had recently raised $12.5 million in series A round from SAIF Partners, IDG Ventures, Valiant Capital and Vertex Ventures. Founded in 2015, it claims to be delivering over 100,000 shipments daily.
The talks of Alibaba investing in these 2 companies also strengthen by the fact that both these logistics companies are working with Paytm as delivery partner for their eCommerce segment and as collector of the KYC documents for their payment bank.