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Why Mukesh Ambani is interested in acquiring majority stake in e-pharmacy Netmeds?

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Mukesh Ambani is in advanced talks to acquire a majority stake in Chennai-based online pharmacy Netmeds. Recently, Netmeds tied up with RIL-owned Reliance Retail for supplying essentials like groceries to its customers. Seems Reliance industries is on big position as top technology company, by way of investing in certain company and acquiring the selected ones.

 

As per the agreement, Reliance, through one of its subsidiaries, may pay $130-150 million for the asset, along with a fresh capital infusion in Netmeds to expand the operations by selling prescription drugs, personal care products, medical devices surgical and baby accessories, and groceries.

 

Netmeds sells prescription drugs, personal care products, medical devices surgical and baby accessories, and groceries. The online store was started by Dadha & Company, a pharmaceutical firm. Netmeds has so far raised about $100 million in three rounds of funding. Besides Dadha, Netmeds is backed by healthcare investor OrbiMed, investment bank MAPE Advisory, Sistema Asia Fund and Singapore-based Daun Penh Cambodia Group.

 

The talks for this acquisition had been on before the lockdown. The deal would take place at a slight premium to Netmeds’ last funding round valuation, added the report.

 

Reliance has been building up it’s online to offline commerce business by acquiring controlling stakes in several business-to-business and consumer-facing Internet companies. It could be the strategic reason, why Reliance sold Facebook a minor shareholding of   9.9% stake for Rs 43,574 crore or $5.7 billion in Reliance Jio and days after private equity firm Silver Lake acquired a 1.15% stake in their digital arm.

If everything goes well with the time, Netmeds would be the eighth company that Reliance Industries has acquired since 2017 and invested about $3 billion on acquisitions in companies including Saavn, Embibe, Fynd, Haptik, and NowFloats among others. 

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