Even as Indian government cracks down on Chinese apps in the country, Chinese technology major Tencent has invested $62.8 million into e-commerce platform Flipkart, regulatory filings showed on Wednesday. Entrackr reported that this is likely to be part of the $1.2 billion funding round led by Walmart, which Flipkart said, would be in two tranches over the fiscal year. With that fundraise, Flipkart said it valued the company at $24.9 billion.
The report said that Walmart has so far put in $660.25 million, the Qatar Investment Authority has infused $8.14 million and with Tencentâ€™s addition, Flipkart currently has raised $731.20 million this year.
After Walmart, Tencent is the second largest shareholder in Flipkart, and has increased its stake from 5% to 5.34%.
Tencentâ€™s investment into Flipkart comes at a time that India is having a stand-off with China at the border, leading to Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) rules being changed and Chinese apps being banned. Most recently, India banned popular gaming app PUBG Mobile, which was distributed by Tencent in the country. The Chinese conglomerate also recently said that it would be setting up a regional hub in Singapore. While it is unclear if the funding was routed through the Singapore arm, reports quotes experts as saying that the investment is part of an â€˜investment restructuring strategyâ€™ that Tencent in adopting to tackle regulatory restrictions in India.
The fundraising also coincides with reports suggesting on Wednesday that Flipkart is looking at listing on the stock markets abroad and is likely to file for an Initial Public Offering (IPO) as early as 2021. Flipkart is reportedly aiming for a valuation of $45-50 billion. If this happens, Reuters reported, parent company Walmart would have more than doubled its investment. In 2016, it put $16 billion in Flipkart for around 77% stake.
Flipkart is looking at either Singapore (where it is incorporated) or the US for listing, Reuters reported. This comes at a time that India is drafting rules that would allow Indian companies to list on stock exchanges overseas.
In FY20, Flipkart claimed to have reported 45% growth in active customers, as well as 30% growth in transactions. It also said that it recently surpasses 1.5 billion visits per month.