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Ola picks up £71m investment from Flipkart co-founder Sachin Bansal

Tyrone Stewart

Bhavish Aggarwal Sachin Bansal Ola

Indian ride-hailing service Ola has added 650 crore INR (£71m/$92m) in further funding, this time in the form of a big name in the form of Sachin Bansal, co-founder of Flipkart, the Indian eCommerce company owned by Walmart. The investment forms part of Ola’s larger ongoing Series J funding round.

Bansal’s investment in Ola comes a month after it received 520 crore INR ($75m) from Steadview Capital as part of the same round of financing. The round is expected to exceed $1bn in total funding – with a Temasek-affiliated investment vehicle reported to pick up a seven per cent stake in Ola and SoftBank having offered a term sheet for a perspective $1bn investment in December. According to filings, Ola is now valued at $5.7bn.

“Ola is one of India’s most promising consumer businesses, that is creating deep impact and lasting value for the ecosystem,” said Bansal. “On one hand, they have emerged as a global force in the mobility space and on the other, they continue to build deeper for various needs of a billion Indians through their platform, becoming a trusted household name today.”

Bhavish Aggarwal, co-founder & CEO of Ola dubbed Bansal as an “icon of entrepreneurship” and said he looks forward to learning from Bansal’s “journey, his mentorship, and guidance”.

Bansal left Flipkart almost at the same time as Walmart agreeing to acquire a 77 per cent stake in the company last year – before it acquired most of the remaining stake in the company from SoftBank. In November 2018, fellow Flipkart co-founder Binny Bansal – no relation – resigned over allegations of “serious personal misconduct”.

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