Indian electronic payment and e-commerce brand Paytm has reportedly acquired online marketplace platform Little and Nearbuy, the company announced on Wednesday. "The merger of the two deal platforms in the country and the partnership with Paytm will help merchants and customers bring business synergies and will further strengthen Paytm's presence in the O2O space in India". In total, Nearbuy and Little have around 40,000 merchants on their platform across food, beauty, travel and other categories. "The combined entity will continue to enable customers to discover deals and save money whenever they step out, and also help merchants effectively utilize their inventory and acquire new customers", Paytm said in a statement. "I am sure consumers will love the greater selection and reach of everyday deals and discount offers", Paytm founder Vijay Shekhar Sharma stated. Both startups unarguably strengthen Paytm's offline-to-online (O20) operations and ramp up its merchant network in categories such as restaurants, movie theaters, hotels, salons, gyms, spas and more.
It was reported that the merger is expected to be valued at about $100 million with a fresh capital infusion of $25 million by Paytm.
"In the local commerce space, Little Internet and Nearbuy combined will own 88% of the market share", said Warikoo, Nearbuy's CEO without commenting on specifics of the transaction.
Paytm will hold around 50% in the merger. "The industry is young and Paytm's consumer and merchant reach will benefit us tremendously", Ankur Warikoo, Ravi Shankar and Snehesh Mitra, founders of Nearbuy.com said. Customers would be able to access Nearbuy and Little Internet deals/discounts via the Paytm app.
Paytm's goal is to equip its five million merchants tools to expand their business.