|Type of business||Private|
Type of site
|Headquarters||New Delhi, India|
|Founder(s)||Kunal Bahl |
|Revenue||₹903 crore (US$130 million) (2017)|
|Alexa rank||1,025 (Jan 2019[update])|
|Native client(s) on||iOS, Android, Windows|
Snapdeal is an Indian e-commerce company based in New Delhi, India. The company was started by Kunal Bahl and Rohit Bansal in February 2010. As of 2014, Snapdeal had 3,00,000 sellers, over 3 crore products across 800+ diverse categories from over 1,25,000 regional, national, and international brands and retailers and a reach of 6,000 towns and cities across the country.
Investors in the company include SoftBank Corp, Ru-Net Holdings, Tybourne Capital, PremjiInvest, Alibaba Group, Temasek Holdings, Bessemer Venture Partners, IndoUS Ventures, Kalaari Capital, Saama Capital, Foxconn Technology Group, Blackrock, eBay, Nexus Ventures, Intel Capital, Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan, Singapore-based investment entity Brother Fortune Apparel and Ratan Tata. In April 2015, Snapdeal acquired FreeCharge for $400 million, but resold the mobile-payments company in 2017.
Snapdeal was founded on 4 February 2010 as a daily deals platform, but expanded in September 2011 to become an online marketplace. Snapdeal has grown to become one of the largest online marketplace in India offering an assortment of 3 crore products across diverse categories from over 3,00,000 sellers, shipping to more than 6,000 towns and cities in India. In March 2015, Snapdeal brought actor Aamir Khan for the promotion of its website in India. In October 2017, Snapdeal's CFO Anup Vikal resigned.
Snapdeal has received several rounds of funding. It received its first funding worth US$12 million from Nexus Venture Partners and Indo-US Venture Partners in January 2011. This was followed by another round in July 2011 worth US$45 million from Bessemer Venture Partners and existing investors. The third round of funding was worth US$50 million and came from eBay and other pre-existing investors.
Three years later, in February 2014, Snapdeal raised funding of US$133 million. This round was led by eBay with participation from then-current institutional investors: Kalaari Capital, Nexus Venture Partners, Bessemer Venture Partners, Intel Capital and Saama Capital. In May of the same year, funding worth US$105 million was raised. This was backed by investors BlackRock, Temasek Holdings, PremjiInvest and others. Softbank invested US$647 million in October 2014, making it the largest investor in Snapdeal so far.
In August 2015, Alibaba Group, Foxconn and SoftBank invested US$500 million as fresh capital. In February of the following year, one of the world's largest pension funds, Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan, and Singapore-based investment entity Brother Fortune Apparel, led an investment worth US$200 million in the Jasper Infotech-owned company.
Snapdeal has acquired several business enterprises. In June 2010, Snapdeal owners Jasper Infotech Pvt Ltd acquired Bengaluru-based group buying website Grabbon.com for an undisclosed amount. In April 2012, Delhi-based online sports goods retailer esportsbuy.com was acquired. This was followed in 2013 by the acquisition of Shopo.in, an online marketplace for Indian handicraft products. In 2014, SnapDeal acquired Doozton.com, a fashion product discovery technology platform, and Wishpicker.com, a tech platform that uses machine learning to deliver recommendations for gift purchases. Both deals were for undisclosed amounts.
Snapdeal made majority of its acquisitions in the year 2015. In January, it acquired a stake in product comparison website, Smartprix.com followed by the acquisition of luxury fashion products discovery site, Exclusively.in. In March, the firm acquired 20% stake in logistics service company Gojavas.com. Two more acquisitions in the same month were eCommerce management software and fulfillment solution provider, Unicommerce.com and RupeePower, a digital platform for financial transactions. In April 2015, mobile-payments company FreeCharge.com was acquired. Programmatic display advertising platform, Reduce Data was acquired in September of the same year.
In August 2016, logistics firm Pigeon Express acquired a 51% stake in GoJavas with Snapdeal holding 49% stake in the firm.
In August 2016, rumors surfaced through a VCCircle exclusive article that Snapdeal was considering possibilities of mergers with its bigger rivals Flipkart and Amazon. The speculations about a possible merger became more concrete in April 2017 when a number of media houses reported that Softbank, one of the major investors in Snapdeal, wanted the company to merge with Flipkart. The discussions on merger with Flipkart went on for a number of months and ended in July 2017 when the deal failed to get approved by 100% of investors as required by the terms put forth by Flipkart. Founders' opposition to the deal, several indemnity clauses related to Snapdeal's financials and minority stakeholders' discontentment over special payouts to Kalaari Capital and Nexus Venture Partners, Snapdeal's early investors, were among the many reasons that lead to the breakdown of the deal. This was followed by Snapdeal's founders taking a decision to continue operating Snapdeal as an independent company with Snapdeal 2.0 as their new vision.
However, amid the merger discussions, Freecharge, a mobile payments company bought by Snapdeal in April 2015, was sold to Axis Bank for $60 million. Freecharge was originally acquired by Snapdeal for $400 million.
In the year 2012-13, Snapdeal had said that it expected revenues of about ₹600 crore (US$83 million). Betting big on the growth of mobile commerce, Kunal Bahl, the CEO, said at the time that 15-20 per cent of the sales on Snapdeal came through m-commerce. Snapdeal.com expected the total sale of products traded on its platform to cross ₹2,000 crore (US$280 million) in the fiscal year 2013-14 helped by its robust growth in the past two years and the growing popularity of e-commerce in India. In June 2014, Snapdeal announced that it had achieved the milestone of 1000 sellers its platform getting sales of over ₹1 crore. Jasper Infotech Pvt. Ltd led Snapdeal registered a revenue growth of 56% to ₹1,457 crore from ₹933 crore, but incurred 150% increase in loss from ₹1,328 crore in the year ended 31 March 2016 The year-to-March 2016 numbers includes the financials of digital payments platform Freecharge, which was acquired by Snapdeal in April 2015 There was a 40% drop in revenue to ₹903 crore in the fiscal year ending in 2017.
Snapdeal employees approached the Labour Department in February 2016, claiming that the company was firing them and had forced 600 employees to resign in the last one year.
After protests from Snapdeal employees, Delhi Government ordered the Labour Department to probe the allegations.
Aamir Khan controversy
Snapdeal was criticized for Aamir Khan's statement during a conversation with Anant Goenka, Wholetime Director & Head — New Media, The Indian Express, at the eighth edition of the Ramnath Goenka Excellence in Journalism Awards. Snapdeal terminated Aamir Khan as a brand ambassador in February 2016 after an official statement released in response to the controversy. Aamir Khan had been hired as Snapdeal's brand ambassador in February 2015 for its "Diwali Dil Ki Deal-wali" campaign.
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