On Tuesday, according to a report from the Mint newspaper which cites sources familiar with the matter at hand, Walmart Inc is in talks with India’s Tata Group for a potential investment of up to $25 billion in its new “super app”.
The new “super app could be launched as a joint venture between Tata and Walmart, leveraging on the synergies between Tata’s e-commerce business and Flipkart, Walmart’s e-commerce unit,” said the report.
The development comes in the wake of India’s Reliance Industries Ltd, controlled by Mukesh Ambani, Asia’s richest individual, raising more than $20 billion from investors including KKR & Co, Facebook, Silver Lake Partners, and Alphabet’s Google, by selling stakes in its digital business Jio Platforms.
In a separate but related report, Bloomberg News reported, Tata Group is negotiating with potential investors on stakes in its new digital platform.
Tata’s app, scheduled to be launched in India in December or January 2021, aims to provide a common platform for the conglomerate’s consumer business under one channel and will offer a wide range of products in the retail space.
Incidentally, Tata’s consumer businesses include watch and jewellery brand Titan and fashion retail chain Trent.
With the news reaching the market, shares of Tata Motors, Tata Consultancy Services, and Tata Steel gained more than 1% each.
In the event Walmart’s deal comes through, it will top its investment in Flipkart, for which it paid $16 billion for a 66% stake.
Walmart has hired Goldman Sachs as its lead banker in the proposed deal.
Neither the Tata Group, Goldman Sachs nor Walmart immediately responded to requests for comment.