India’s Tata acquires majority stake in online grocer BigBasket

By Ashika Rajan, Trainee Reporter
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Indian multinational conglomerate Tata Group’s holding company Tata Sons has acquired a majority stake in online grocery seller BigBasket, putting the firm in direct competition with eCommerce giant Amazon, Walmart’s Flipkart, and Reliance.

Tata Digital, a Tata Sons unit, purchased the shareholding. While the salt-to-software group’s digital unit did not disclose financial details of the Tata-BigBasket deal, regulatory papers revealed that it acquired a 64 percent stake in Supermarket Grocery Supplies, the online grocer’s business-to-business arm.

According to news reports, the acquisition is valued at around $1.31 billion and will involve buying out Chinese giant Alibaba’s Stake. 

The deal comes as India’s eCommerce sales, especially of food and groceries, have risen as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak, which has prompted a significant shift to online shopping.

As per the reports, Tata, which has interests in products spanning from salt to luxury automobiles to software, is aiming to launch a “super app” that will connect all of its consumer businesses.

Mr. Pratik Pal, Chief Executive Officer Tata Digital said in a statement that “grocery is one of the largest components of an individual’s consumption basket in India, and BigBasket, as India’s largest e-grocery player, fits perfectly with our vision of creating a large consumer digital ecosystem. We are delighted to welcome BigBasket as a part of Tata Digital.”

Mr. Hari Menon, BigBasket’s Co-founder and CEO concluded that the company was “extremely excited about its future as part of Tata Group. As a part of the Tata ecosystem, we would be able to build stronger consumer-connect and accelerate our journey.”

Related: India’s Flipkart seeks to raise $1bn in pre-IPO financing: Sources