Walmart has plans to expand its presence in the cash and carry business in India, especially in the fresh greens or vegetables and fruits product segment. NinjaCart is a startup that operates in this precise segment, procuring from small farmers and delivering to the retail outlets. Now there is a report that Walmart will take a position in NinjaCart with a $50 million investment of which the first tranche of $10 million is being invested immediately. Walmart may get to nominate its representative on the board of NinjaCart as per the reports on this development.
Though Flipkart is the Indian entity Walmart must be looking at to strengthen, it is learnt the company wants to work on Flipkartās grocery business separately. Even otherwise, the NinjaCart model in more B2B in a sense, and not direct retail play.
One opinion even says Walmart has been practically pushed into entering the cash and carry business in an aggressive manner due to rivals like Amazon, BigBasket and Reliance industries already showing huge interest.
NinjaCart has had no difficulty in raising funds so far having received up to $140 million so far. US investor Tiger Global had led an investment round of Rs 624.8 crore only this April and in June another Rs 62.4 crore came from Tiger Global and Tanglin Venture Partners.
The daily activity of NinjaCart involves procuring around 1,400 tonnes of agricultural produce, mostly fresh fruits and vegetables and delivering to 50,000 retail stores. The farmers from whom these products are sourced number around 25,000. The 50K stores are spread over seven cities.
The startup has a clutch of promoters, Thirukumaran Nagarajan who is also the NinjaCart CEO, Kartheeswaran KK, Sharath Loganathan, Ashutosh Vikram, Sachin PJ, and Vasudevan Chinnathambi.
The source reporting on the development regarding Walmart investing in NinjaCart claims Walmart wants to work with both the kirana or provision stores in India and the small farmers and help in the upliftment of both.
Both Walmart and NinjaCart have not officially responded to the report.