Amazon rumours – buying BigBasket?

Amazon is said to be in early stage talks to acquire the India based grocery website BigBasket. This comes as the online giant seeks to gain ground in the India e-commerce market.

Reports suggest that talks are at such an early stage that nothing may yet happen. BigBasket is owned by SuperMarket Grocery Supplies Pvt which is India’s largest online grocer and currently operates in around 25 cities across the subcontinent. While BigBasket have denied talks are even taking place, Amazon declined to comment on the matter.

What is known is that Amazon’s CEO Jeff Bezos has promised to spend US$5 billion in India in the coming years as he attempts to strengthen his foothold in the country. Amazon’s existing success in fighting for customers in the country has resulted in the two largest Indian e-commerce companies, Flipkart and Snapdeal, to come together in a merger.

No terms have yet been agreed. BigBasket is also known to be talking to private equity firms, and only last year won $150m in a funding round. It has been boosting its revenues and has reached break even in two cities.

Meanwhile Amazon has been expanding its online food and grocery offerings worldwide, Only recently Apex Insight reported how the firm has opened a drive through grocery location in Seattle, and that it is to be expected to be doing the same in the UK in relatively short order.

Meanwhile, in India Amazon has sought a license for food retail trading from India’s Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion that oversees foreign investments into India. One government minister has recently said that Amazon plans to invest $500 million in this sector.
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