BENGALURU: The founders of Unicommerce eSolutions, the Snapdeal-owned, SaaS-based e-commerce solutions provider, have quit the company, two years after being acquired by the Gurgaon-based online marketplace in a cash-and-stock deal.
The development also comes a little less than a month after Snapdeal called off its proposed acquisition by larger rival Flipkart, India’s largest online commerce company, and announced that it planned to continue moving forward as an independent entity.
According to Unicommerce founders, the decision to quit was part of an agreement between them and Snapdeal to move on two years after the acquisition.
“As part of the sale transaction in April 2015, it was mutually agreed that we would continue to work at Unicommerce for another two years and steer the company to further growth. In August 2017, this period comes to a successful close and we are happy to note that Unicommerce has grown and become a dominant force in the e-commerce space,”
Ankit Pruthi, co-founder and former chief executive of Unicommerce, wrote in a statement to ET.
In July, Kapil Makhija and Ankit Khandelwal were reported to have been named as the new CEO and COO, respectively, of Unicommerce.
Snapdeal had acquired Unicommerce in a cash-and-stock transaction in April 2015, for an undisclosed sum. However, unlike its other acquisitions, the online marketplace, however, had never publicly announced this particular transaction. According to sources, SoftBank-backed Snapdeal had splashed out about $40 million to acquire Unicommerce.
Pruthi, however, declined to comment on the deal. Prior to its acquisition by Snapdeal two-and-a-half years ago, Unicommerce counted Nexus Venture Partners, also an early backer of Snapdeal, as its only institutional investor, having raised about $1 million in the venture from the venture capital firm.
Additionally, Snapdeal founders, Kunal Bahl and Rohit Bansal, had also invested in the company, in their personal capacities.
Snapdeal is also believed to have placed Unicommerce on the block, having already sold its digital payments platform FreeCharge to Axis Bank last month for Rs 385 crore, a development that was first reported by ET. The ecommerce company is also in the process of selling its logistics business Vulcan Express, as it looks to raise much-needed cash to finance its marketplace operations.
Founded by IIT Delhi alums Ankit Pruthi, Karun Singla and Vibhu Garg in 2012, Unicommerce is a SaaS-based, multichannel order fulfillment and warehouse management platform that caters to both, online and traditional retail brands. The company, which claims to process upwards of 100 million orders annually and has more than 10,000 sellers, counts leading online companies, such as, Amazon, Jabong, Flipkart and eBay. It also works with the likes of Raymond, Ritu Kumar and Puma, amongst others.
In May earlier this year, Snapdeal allotted preference shares worth Rs 113.16 crore to existing backer Nexus Venture Partners and to founders Bahl and Bansal, in lieu of the acquisition.
As per documents filed by the Gurgaon-based company with the Registrar of Documents, and accessed by corporate research and mentoring platform Tofler, Nexus Venture Partners was issued 14,810 preference shares, valued at Rs 96.26 crore.
Separately, Bahl and Bansal were each allotted 1,300 Series J1 preference shares, which have a cumulative value of Rs 16.90 crore. A resolution to increase the company’s authorised share capital, through the issuance of 17,410 Series J1 compulsorily convertible cumulative preference shares of Rs 20 each, was also taken at an extraordinary general meeting held on March 10.
According to a statement from Snapdeal, Unicommerce has turned profitable, having recorded EBITDA margin of 20%-25% for the April to June quarter of the current fiscal, and is now looking to expand to markets in the Middle East. It, however, did not provide any revenue figure for the same period.