Alibaba Group and Foxconn are in discussions to jointly invest about US$500 million in Indian e-commerce firm Snapdeal.com, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with the matter.
The China and Taiwan-based groups could take a combined 10 percent stake in Snapdeal, valuing the five-year-old online marketplace at roughly US$5 billion, according to the report.
Foxconn Chairman Terry Gou is said to have convinced Alibaba Group founder Jack Ma that it would make more sense to invest together in the Indian online retailer, rather than separately.
Snapdeal last year received an investment of nearly US$1 billion from eBay and Japan’s SoftBank, in a deal that gave it a valuation of US$2 billion.
For Alibaba, an investment in Snapdeal could speed up the Chinese group’s expansion in India’s fast-growing e-commerce market.
As for Foxconn, a deal would give the contract electronics maker a foothold in India, where demand for smartphones has been booming, the Journal noted.
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