Observers of an emerging startup ecosystem look for exits as a sign of maturity. Exits in the form of mergers and acquisitions (M&As) or IPOs give VCs a return on their investment. They can then launch new funds to invest in fresh startups. It completes the cycle of venture capital.
Indian tech IPOs are rare. So the approval given in September by SEBI to ecommerce firm Infibeam to raise Rs. 4,500 million (US$68 million) breaks new ground. So far in India, we’ve only seen sky-high valuations and mega funding rounds, not blockbuster IPOs.
Before Infibeam, listing and search services firm Justdial had a successful IPO in 2013 and travel firm MakeMyTrip listed on the Nasdaq in 2010.
But while an IPO may still be as rare in India, it’s been raining acquisitions. Industry body Nasscom had counted 65 acquisitions of startups by mid-October. Here are two of 11 acquisitions that shook up the startup ecosystem in India last year.
Snapdeal acquires FreeCharge
Snapdeal had a number of other major acquisitions last year, including loans platform RupeePower, mobile tech firm Martmobi, artisanal marketplace Shopo, mobile app designer Letsgomo, etc. Amidst this churn in Indian ecommerce was
Ola acquires TaxiForSure
Ola, bought out TaxiForSure for $200 million, due to a timely fund round by SoftBank in October 2014.
At the time of acquisition, TaxiForSure, which got rolling a few months after Ola launched in January 2011, had 15,000 vehicles across 47 cities on its platform.
This is an excerpt from Tech in Asia. You can read the full article here.