Flipkart co-founder Sachin Bansal likely to quit after Walmart's deal

Walmart may end up spending anywhere between $8 billion and $12 billion to buy a majority stake in Flipkart

Walmart may end up spending anywhere between $8 billion and $12 billion to buy a majority stake in Flipkart

After being at the helm of the company he co-founded for over a decade, Flipkart's Executive Chairman Sachin Bansal may hang up his boots if the acquisition of India's largest e-commerce firm by the US-based retail behemoth Walmart comes to fruition.

The buyback also appears to be the first somewhat public confirmation from Flipkart of its current sale talks with Walmart, which will buy at least 55% of Flipkart in a deal that will value the company at $20-21 billion.

While CEO of Flipkart Kalyan Krishnamurthy will reportedly continue in his position, reports also said that co-founder Sachin Bansal may quit. The buzz is that the American company could bag four of the 10 seats on the board but the top management is not expected to change.

Walmart would maintain a focus on the grocery market, said the sources, suggesting that nearly 50% of Walmart's initial investment would be funneled into building a food and grocery supply chain.

The newspaper report that Walmart wants Group CEO Binny Bansal and Krishnamurthy to have more crucial rules in the company.

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"We all knew that Amazon had been in the fray", reported Kritika Saxena, for CNBC-TV18, "but what we are looking at now is that a formal offer has finally been made".

In 2007, former Amazon executive, Sachin Bansal, teamed up with his IIT-Delhi batch mate Binny Bansal, to start Flipkart as an online books seller.

After failing to build an online retail venture, this deal will give Walmart another chance at India's growing ecommerce market and take on Amazon, which it has been struggling to compete with in the rest of the globe. Amazon is out of the running unless Walmart hits unforeseen trouble. A spokesman for Walmart declined to comment.

Much is left to speculation, however: Amazon, Walmart and Flipkart all refuse to comment in any official capacity on what could well become one of the most important e-commerce deals of the year. India is the next big potential prize after the United States and China, where foreign retailers have made little progress against Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. Founder Jeff Bezos has committed $5.5 billion to the country and his local chief, Amit Agarwal, has made progress by adapting the site to local conditions. However, Tiger Global, Accel, Microsoft, Naspers and Ebay remain on the cap table of Flipkart. It is already the most valuable startup in India.

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