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World’s largest retailer loves Indian startups

When PhonePe fell into Walmart's lap
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When PhonePe fell into Walmart's lap

When the US giant signed the deal with Flipkart it got PhonePe, a little-noticed digital payments subsidiary as part of the deal. Walmart debated for months whether to keep funding the payments business internally or whether to separate the operation so it could raise outside funds. After plowing nearly $300 million into PhonePe, the US retailer opted for the latter course. The new funding is aimed at helping PhonePe's growth.

Agencies
Acqui-hiring new startups
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Acqui-hiring new startups

As the company grows internationally, it understands the need to strengthen its customer service and recently acqui-hired FloCare and BigTrade. While FloCare enables various healthcare services to come under one roof, while specializing in geriatric care. BigTrade, is a platform for online wholesale trading platform.

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Expansion in mind
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Expansion in mind

Walmart's Store No. 8 that works with startups in the field of robotics, virtual and augmented reality, machine learning and artificial intelligence, recently hired former executive of Bain Capital Ventures, Scott Eckert, to run this incubator. Store 8 has so far launched startups like JetBlack, a same-day delivery service where customers can place orders using a text message and Spatial&, a virtual reality merchandising company.

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Investing in NinjaCart
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Investing in NinjaCart

Walmart's love for homegrown startup seems to continue as it is now committing to investing close to $50 million in the fresh fruit and vegetable supply chain startup, NinjaCart, according to sources. The first tranche, pegged at $10 million, is likely to close in the next three weeks, and Walmart will get a board seat in NinjaCart as part of the transaction. (Pic: NinjaCart/Facebook)

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Getting a foothold
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Getting a foothold

Here, Walmart will also enjoy a right to further invest in the startup, as per the deal terms. This gives Walmart a stronger foothold in the fresh produce segment, widely perceived as one of the biggest, but underserved and complex categories, while also helping Flipkart in scaling up its grocery business. For now, there will be no direct integration of NinjaCart with Flipkart's grocery play. The Indian ecommerce firm is majority owned by Walmart. (Pic: NinjaCart/Facebook)

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