The long-running will they/won’t they saga between Indian eCommerce players Flipkart and Snapdeal has finally come to end, with Snapdeal deciding to remain independent, despite it looking certain Flipkart would complete a takeover.
Snapdeal’s board, Jasper Infotech, had agreed in principle to Flipkart’s bid of up to $950m and the deal was awaiting approval from other shareholders as of last week. However, Snapdeal’s founders Kunal Bahl and Rohit Bansal instead opted for the path of continued independence.
It will now run a stripped-down version of its online marketplace with the backing of early investors Kalaari Capital and Nexus Venture Partners.
“The company has now decided to pursue an independent path and is terminating all strategic discussions as a result,” Snapdeal told Reuters in a statement.
The decision comes as a blow to Snapdeal’s biggest shareholder, SoftBank, as it was very keen on the closure of the deal and taking an equity stake in Flipkart, as a result.
Snapdeal has already agreed to the sale of its digital payments unit, FreeCharge, for $60m to India’s third largest private-sector lender, Axis Bank. And it is currently in talks with Standard Chartered’s private equity arm over the sale of its Vulcan Express logistics unit.