Flipkart, the largest e-commerce company in India, announced on Twitter that it has raised a massive $1 billion round. The round was led by Tiger Global Management and Naspers, with participation by GIC and existing investors Accel Partners, DST Global, ICONIQ Capital, Morgan Stanley Investment Management, and Sofina. The tweet confirms reports several days earlier in the Economic Times that company had secured that amount in funding at a reported $7 billion valuation.
In a statement, Flipkart said the “funds will be used to make long-term strategic investments in India, especially in mobile technology.”
This takes the total Flipkart has raised so far to $1.75 billion. The company, which now has 22 million registered users and makes 5 million shipments a month, last announced fundraising in May, when the company said that it had closed a $210 million round led by DST Global, with participation from Tiger Global, Naspers, and Iconiq Capital.
Flipkart will most likely use the money to ward off competition from Snapdeal and Amazon, which launched in India a year ago. It will also continue acquiring startups–it’s most recent purchase was online fashion dealer Myntra in a deal reportedly worth $300 million.
Rocket Internet, the Berlin-based incubator founded by the Samwer brothers with a number of notable exits and fundings under its belt, is branching further into Asia, and specifically emerging markets.
It’s partnering with Ooredoo, the main carrier in Qatar (formerly known as QTel), in a new joint venture called Asia Internet Holding to build and fund e-commerce startups, especially those focused on mobile services. The pair are not yet revealing how much money they are investing, but you could look to similar projects from Rocket as one marker: Africa Internet Holding, also formed in partnership with carriers, is building and investing in its regional startup portfolio with $410 million to spend.
Founded in 2010 by Yusuke Tanaka and three other founders, Locondo is one of the largest ecommerce sites selling shoes in Japan. Yusuke, an ex-McKinsey consultant who worked in Silicon Valley from 2007 to 2010, was very inspired by Tony Hsieh’s Zappos. “I had an opportunity to hear about the story of Zappos. I thought there was great potential to do it in Japan,” says Yusuke. By chance, Yusuke met the guys from Rocket Internet, the German ecommerce startup machine. In 2010, Locondo received a US$10 million investment from Rocket followed by another $5 million in 2011. Rocket Internet also provided expertise in logistics and warehousing to Yusuke’s team.
Indian e-store Flipkart announced yesterday it surpassed $1 billion in gross merchandising volume, according to NextBigWhat. Despite slowing sales growth, Flipkart reached the billion-dollar benchmark a full year earlier than originally projected and seven years after it first launched. Co-founder Sachin Bansal originally made that forecast in March 2013.