New bets

E-commerce unicorns and payments ponycorns

Why are Snapdeal and Flipkart pulling all stops to raise money for FreeCharge and PhonePe?


FreeCharge, India’s second-largest mobile wallet company, must easily be the most sought after investment in Indian e-commerce, even though technically it isn’t even for sale.

How else would you explain the steady stream of deep-pocketed international investors that have been in the final stages of discussions to invest in it?

SoftBank and Foxconn started conversations with it to invest around $300 million in October 2015, just six months after FreeCharge was acquired by Snapdeal, India’s third-largest e-commerce company. Snapdeal is understood to have paid approximately $150 million in cash and $300 million in its own stock to acquire FreeCharge.

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