Thursday, April 22, 2021

Tiger Global eyes PharmEasy stake amid e-pharmacy consolidation, Health News, ET HealthWorld

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Tiger Global eyes PharmEasy stake amid e-pharmacy consolidationBengaluru: Tiger Global Management, one of the most fervent backers of Indian startups, is in early-stage talks for an investment in online pharmacy platform PharmEasy, two people aware of the discussions said. Tiger Global, which recently closed its thirteenth global fund of $6.65 billion, its biggest till date, has been aggressively investing in local startups this year and now it is eyeing the e-pharmacy space, these people added.

Sources aware of the talks mentioned the investment size is yet to be finalised but it would be a mix of primary and secondary capital infusion where some of the early investors may sell parts of their stake in PharmEasy parent firm API Holdings. “Tiger has been in talks with PharmEasy for several weeks now and it’s progressing steadily. They (PharmEasy) have got the final approval from antitrust regulator Competition Commission of India (CCI) on the investment from Prosus Ventures and now talks with Tiger will move ahead,” one of the people mentioned above said.

PharmEasy parent is in the final stages of closing a investment of around $300 million from Prosus Ventures and private equity major TPG Capital. This too is a mix of primary and secondary share sale. In a secondary transaction, existing investors sell their stake (partial or full) to new investors and the money does not go to the company coffers.

Tiger Global has already invested at least around $150 million in Indian startups this year so far, based on investments that have been made public, according to data from Venture Intelligence. Media platforms have also reported about Tiger’s other potential investments in startups like Plum, ShareChat, ClearTax, and others. Some of Tiger’s current prominent Indian bets include Zomato, Byju’s and Razorpay, among others.

Tiger Global’s interest in e-pharmacy comes at a time when the space continues to see increased action. The Tata Group is in the final stages of taking a majority stake in e-pharmacy 1MG while Reliance Industries has entered the space through Netmeds. Amazon is scaling up medicine delivery operations, starting from Bengaluru.

When contacted, PharmEasy co-founder Dhaval Shah declined to comment while an email sent to Tiger Global spokesperson did not immediately elicit any response.

Industry reports say 6 million new households have tried e-pharmacy post the virus outbreak last year, taking the total to 9 million. A higher order frequency, higher average ticket size of purchases, and a bigger healthcare play are what the large strategic players are focusing on.



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