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Snapdeal ropes in Palaash Ventures’ Abhishek Kumar to look after M&As, investments

31 July, 2014

Snapdeal.com, the second-largest e-commerce company in India, has appointed Abhishek Kumar as its head of corporate development. In his new role, Kumar will be responsible for acquisitions, investments and deep partnerships that can lead to mergers for the company. He will also look at all avenues of inorganic expansion for the e-commerce player.

“We recognise that no company can do everything well by itself, and hence we look forward to working closely with the ecosystem of entrepreneurs and venture capitalists in India to build deep partnerships. Kumar with his experience brings the necessary skills to take Snapdeal into newer orbits of success through strategic partnerships,” said Kunal Bahl, co-founder and CEO, Snapdeal.

Kumar has over 15 years of experience in VC investments, strategic partnerships, business management and M&A in technology and media businesses. Prior to Snapdeal, he was head – investments at Palaash Ventures, an early stage, sector agnostic investment firm. Before that he was with TV18 Broadcast Ltd, leading the new ventures function for the media group.

He had earlier worked with companies like CNN-IBN, Sahara Samay, Network 1 Media and NDTV. He holds an MBA from Indian School of Business, Hyderabad and a BA (Honours) in Economics from Delhi University.

Kumar said, “Snapdeal is an example of a successful home grown e-commerce brand in India. I am happy and excited to be a part of this company and contribute to its development going forward.”

Snapdeal was started as a pure online deals site and later it pivoted to a full-fledged horizontal e-commerce company via a marketplace model in September 2011. Earlier this year, the company secured $100 million (Rs 590 crore) in a fresh round of funding from a group of new investors, including US-based BlackRock Financial Management, Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund Temasek, Hong Kong-based Myriad Asset Management and Tybourne Capital Management, besides PremjiInvest, the personal investment vehicle of Wipro chairman Azim Premji. The latest round brought Snapdeal’s total fundraising to around $320 million.

In comparison, just on Tuesday, India’s largest e-commerce platform Flipkart.com announced that it had raised $1 billion (around Rs 6,000 crore) in a fresh funding round co-led by two of its existing investors Tiger Global and Naspers. One of the two sovereign wealth funds of Singapore, GIC, along with other existing investors Accel Partners, DST Global, ICONIQ Capital, Morgan Stanley Investment Management and Sofina, also participated in this latest financing round.

Amazon Inc., which runs an e-commerce marketplace in India through Amazon.in, has also announced that it will invest an additional $2 billion (around 12,000 crore) to support its rapid growth in the country. Last month, the company had also appointed Abhijeet Muzumdar, former VP of global VC firm Bessemer Venture Partners as its head of corporate development and private investments. In his role, Muzumdar will also look at acquisitions in India and Southeast Asia.

(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)


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Snapdeal ropes in Palaash Ventures’ Abhishek Kumar to look after M&As, investments

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