Investment venture Temasek Holdings has bought around 1% in India’s Just Dial in the last couple of weeks for around $13-$14 million.
This is not the first time for Temasek to invest in Just Dial Ltd but for the second time. Just Dial Ltd, “Which runs the India-specific local business listings site Justdial.com and is slowly morphing into an e-commerce marketplace,” says the report in VCCircle.
Singapore-based Temasek started to invest outside Singapore only in 2002-2003. It does not want to be called fund-raising as it funds from its own money and has its own balance sheet and pays taxes like a company. It makes investment through its own divestments or earning through dividends. Ravi Lambah, co-head of India, Africa and West India said, “When we started investing outside Singapore , we played for economic growth. So,first we went to China and then gradually moved to India. Initially, we did not have enough resources so we started with banks, as they are seen as proxy for economic growth.”
Mumbai-based Just Dial offers B2C and B2B listings of small and medium business around the country, along with other services across multiple platforms, including the Internet, phone, wireless and print. Sequoia Capital and SAIF Partners are its primary investor who invested in the company before its IPO.
Temasek was one among the initial investors when Just Dial had listed for IPO in mid-2013 and had purchased additional shares from the open market after the IPO, but with the company’s share price shot up after a float, the firm has exited its fund. The company invested around $10 million to acquire slightly over 1.5% on Just Dial and exited with around profit of 30% to 35%.
The current new funds have been planned to invest in countries that are open to structural reforms which are China, India and Mexico. In a recent interview Lambah had said, “In India, we are seeing the Modi-led government focussing on reviving investment-led growth. We have been very active in India last year and it was probably one of our most active areas on investment. We have been seeing potential in investing in the country on a long-term perspective. We remain optimistic that India will deliver returns over the long-term.”