Spencer's Retail Ltd, part of RP Sanjiv Goenka Group, has agreed to acquire upmarket grocery chain Nature's Basket from Godrej Industries Ltd for Rs 300 crore ($42.76 million).
The acquisition will provide Spencer's, which runs grocery stores in some parts of the country, access to western and southern markets through 36 stores of Nature's Basket in cities such as Mumbai, Pune and Bengaluru.
"Nature's Basket has a strong portfolio of private label brands which has huge traction with its consumers," Shashwat Goenka, who heads RP Sanjiv Goenka Group's retail business, said in a statement on Friday. The group will also benefit from the chain's online grocery business, he added.
Nature's Basket competes with the likes of Future Retail Ltd-owned Foodhall, Reliance Fresh and More, which is being acquired by private equity firm Samara Capital and Amazon.
Tanya Dubash, executive director at Godrej Group, said the retail industry is consolidating and scale has become increasingly important to flourish in this environment. "We realised that to further unlock the immense potential of this brand and to grow it to even greater heights, we need to pass on the torch to owners who have prioritised retail in their portfolio strategy and have the relevant ecosystems to take the business to the next level,” she said.
Lodha Capital acted as the exclusive financial adviser to Godrej Industries in the deal.
The deal comes at a time when competition in both online and offline grocery retail business is intensifying. While Amazon is buying More retail stores, it is also expanding its online grocery delivery business. Flipkart, Amazon's main rival, is also expanding in this segment. The biggest player in the online grocery segment is, however, Alibaba Group-backed BigBasket.
BigBasket raised $150 million earlier this year from South Korea’s Mirae Asset, British investor CDC Group Plc and China’s Alibaba. Earlier this week, BigBasket rival Grofers mopped up ($200 million) in a new funding round led by SoftBank Vision Fund.