Masterclassing

Japan's Softbank plans to invest heavily in series of Indian deals

Tyrone Stewart

SoftbankJapanese multinational telecoms and internet company Softbank is hoping to delve deeper into the Indian market with a series of deals, driven by founder and chairman Masayoshi Son, that are set to shake the Indian tech sector to its core.

The conglomerate is hoping to close deals involving eCommerce company Snapdeal, digital payments firm Paytm and online supermarket BigBasket.

The highest profile of these plans involving Snapdeal, which Softbank has poured money into since 2014, will see it merge with eCommerce market leader Flipkart. The deal could be finalised as soon as next weeks, Reuters reports.

Flipkart recently raised $1.4bn (£1.1bn) in funding from Tencent, eBay and Microsoft – with eBay India becoming part of the Flipkart Group.

As Softbank seeks to push through this merger, it is also close to finalising a cash infusion of more than $1bn into Alibaba-backed Paytm – which will allegedly give it more say in the group.

Separately, Softbank has been linked to a merger between grocery delivery rivals Grofers, which it invested around $70m in, and BigBasket – however, this deal has been said to be ‘unlikely’.