In the single largest fund-raising by an e-commerce company in India, Flipkart, the country's largest online retailer, has raised $1 billion from a clutch of investors. The proceeds will be used for investments, especially in mobile technology.
The funding was co-led by existing investors Tiger Global Management and Naspers.
Singapore's sovereign wealth fund GIC, along with existing investors Accel Partners, DST Global, ICONIQ Capital, Morgan Stanley Investment Management and Sofina also participated in the fund-raising, the company said in a statement.
The fund-raising comes within months of Flipkart becoming the first e-commerce company in India to touch $1 billion in gross merchandise volume.
''We believe the internet will improve the quality of life for millions of Indians, and e-commerce is going to play a huge role in this change," says Flipkart founder Sachin Bansal, a software engineer. "The focus at Flipkart is to continue to make shopping online simpler and more accessible through the use of technology.''
He adds, ''We have close to 22 million registered users today. We handle 5 million shipments a month. These numbers were unheard of a few years back and what is even more exciting is the huge opportunity that we still see before us.''
This is because India has 243 million internet users, which according to Bansal "continues to grow very fast".
He adds, "We want to enable every Indian to either shop or sell online. And we believe that the power of the mobile internet is going to help us achieve this goal,'' said Flipkart co-founder Binny Bansal.
According to Flipkart co founder Binny Bansal, by 2020 India will have more than half a billion mobile internet users.
"Our intense focus on mobile and technology puts us in a unique position to take advantage of this massive opportunity,'' he adds.
According to him this new funding will enable Flipkart to step up its investments for innovations in products and technologies, to become the mobile e-commerce company of the future. "This funding will help us further accelerate momentum and build our presence to become a technology powerhouse,'' he concludes.
Flipkart, which sells more than 15 million products across 70 categories including books, media, consumer electronics and lifestyle products, was launched in October 2007.