Tata Digital has received approval from the Competition Commission of India (CCI) to acquire up to 64.3 percent of BigBasket's B2B arm Supermarket Grocery Supplies Private Ltd (SGS) and gain sole ownership of the B2C arm.
In one or more sequence of phases, the proposed combination entails a combination of primary and secondary acquisitions. SGS could gain sole control of IRC through a separate transaction, according to a statement from the Ministry of Corporate Affairs.
For months, the Tatas have been looking to buy into BigBasket, and the proposed deal also offers an escape route for a number of investors, including Alibaba, which is owned by Chinese billionaire Jack Ma.
Tata Digital Ltd (TDL), SGS, and Innovative Retail Concepts Pvt Ltd (IRC) are the parties to the proposed contract, which is engaged in B2C (Business to Consumer) sales through www.bigbasket.com and related mobile applications.
Apart from SoftBank Vision Fund-backed Grofers, Tata will compete directly with Reliance's Jio Mart, Amazon, and Walmart-owned Flipkart as part of the agreement, which is one of the largest M&A deals in India's digital market.
BigBasket, which was established in 2011, now has a presence in 25 Indian cities. It goes up against Grofers, which is sponsored by SoftBank, as well as Amazon India and Flipkart.