Snapdeal quells speculation of listing on overseas exchange
India’s second-largest e-commerce player Snapdeal has decided to list on domestic bourses. This comes after months of widespread speculation that the Delhi-based e-commerce giant may go for an overseas listing to raise funds.
However, the company has not fixed any timeline for the listing exercise.
In an interaction with FE, Kunal Bahl, CEO of Snapdeal, said, “Whenever we go for a listing we will go for an India listing. Ours is an Indian company, we have Indian employees, Indian buyers and Indian sellers. I want every single employee of Snapdeal to own its shares.”
Speculation that Snapdeal would go for a US listing got fuelled after its mentor company, Alibaba, went for a US listing instead of going public on Chinese exchanges.
The listing would help Snapdeal raise significant capital. In its last round, when its raised $627 million, Snapdeal was estimated to be valued at close to $4 billion.
Two years back, Snapdeal shifted to the Oracle financial auditing system. Bahl says it was complex in the beginning, but now they have gotten used to it. The new auditing system allows better transparency on the company’s financial structure. It also allows better revenue predictability. Like all listed companies, Snapdeal gives a quarterly revenue outlook to investors.
“Every quarter we give it to the board. When we started doing this we were 20% off the mark, but now we are pretty accurate: 5% here and there,” said Bahl.
Company officials confirmed that Snapdeal closed 2014-15 at a gross merchandise value of $3 billion. GMV is not actual revenue, but the total billable amount that the company does. In the next 5-6 years, even on a conservative basis, Bahl expects Snapdeal to do $30-billion business.
Snapdeal is the largest pure-play marketplace in the country with 100,000 sellers. Recently, it acquired mobile payments platform Freecharge to boost its play in the online commerce game, which would help it get into online mobile recharge, utility and other bill payments. With this acquisition, Bahl says it has got almost the same market share as its arch rival Flipkart.
Meanwhile, Bahl is also looking at reducing costs. Snapdeal’s operations are spread across multiple offices in Okhla.
The company recently leased a property in Gurgaon to consolidate all its offices. The drive, Bahl expects, will reduce rentals by 20-25%.
Snapdeal appoints former Airtel exec as customer head
Snapdeal has appointed former Bharti Airtel executive Jayant Sood as its chief customer experience officer (CCO) in yet another senior-level hiring in the last one week. Sood in his new role will be responsible for the company’s customer service operations and for delivering ‘world-class’ experience to customers.
“Snapdeal has seen unprecedented growth in the last three years and is undoubtedly the fastest growing e-commerce company in the country. We are on the road to build world-class customer service operations at Snapdeal that will lay the foundation for best-in-class customer experience,” said Jayant Sood.
Sood spent 20 years of his career at American Express before joining Bharti Airtel as chief service officer. He is experienced in leading and managing large-scale operations delivery, business transformation, finance and accounting, change management and customer experience both within India and across international markets.