MUMBAI: Amazon.com is in late-stage talks to buy as much as 10 per cent of India’s Future Retail Limited, Bloomberg reported yesterday, citing people familiar with the matter.
The move comes as Amazon is looking to expand its reach in the Indian brick-and-mortar market, about a year after retailer Walmart bought a majority stake in Indian e-commerce firm Flipkart.
An Amazon spokeswoman declined to comment on the deal, saying the company does not comment about “what we may or may not do ahead.”
Future Group is seeking a valuation of about 20 billion rupees ($281 million) from Amazon for the stake, according to the report.
The retail group currently operates more than 900 stores in India and owns nine supermarket brands, including Big Bazaar.
Seattle-based Amazon was also in talks with Reliance Industries Limited’s retail unit to buy a stake in India’s biggest brick-and-mortar retailer, two sources with knowledge of the talks said earlier this month.
Future Group did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
The world’s largest online retailer has been slowly building up stake in brick-and-mortar stores in India. Deloitte expects India’s fast-growing e-commerce market to more than treble to $84bn between 2017 and 2021.
Amazon bought a 5pc stake in Indian retailer Shoppers Stop Limited in 2017 and a year later picked up stake in grocery chain More.
In the US, Amazon started embracing brick-and-mortar stores after its 2017 purchase of high-end grocer Whole Foods Market for $13.7bn.