INDIA – BigBasket, a leading Indian online grocer, has reported a 26% rise in losses for the 2020 financial year even as it managed to record a 36% growth in revenues, regulatory documents have shown.

During the 2020 financial year, losses shot up to Rs 710 crore (about US$97.335 million) from Rs 562.6 crore (about US$77.127 million) in FY19, driven up by a one-time cost of Rs 117 crore (about US$16.039 million).

The rise in losses was despite of the company recording a 36% growth in revenues. Revenues rose to Rs 3,818 crore (about US$348.167 million), according to the regulatory documents.

Adiitionally, the company’s expenses rose from Rs 3,365 crore (about US$306.85 million) in FY19 to Rs 4,411 crore (about US$402.24 million) in FY20.

BigBasket faced massive disruptions in its business soon after the country went into lockdown in March 2020 to curb the spread of Covid-19.

It however recovered strongly as more customers flocked to online retail to buy their groceries.

BigBasket had earlier said that it doubled its business during the lockdown, servicing over 300,000 deliveries a day compared to around 150,000 deliveries prior to the shutdown.

The losses and improved revenue come at a time when the Tata group is in the final stages of buying a majority stake in BigBasket for $1.3 billion.

Upon successful completion, the transaction will emerge as one of the largest mergers and acquisitions (M&A) deals in India’s burgeoning consumer internet space and will ascribe a valuation of US$1.6 billion to the Bengaluru-based company.

According to a report by Economic Times India, the Tata Group has already finalised a US$200-250 million primary cash infusion in BigBasket as part of its larger deal to acquire a majority stake in the online grocery company.

Tata Group will reportedly shell out around US$1.2 billion in a mix of primary and secondary share sale to acquire around 60% stake in BigBasket.

According to a report by India’s LiveMint, the deal with Tata includes a plan to launch an IPO as early as 2022-23.

Tata will supposedly integrate Bigbasket and online pharmacy 1mg, which it is also in talks to acquire a majority stake, into a super app it is planning to build.

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