Investments, Mobile

SoftBank to Reportedly Buy 20% Stake in Micromax for Almost $1 Billion

image source: unitedliberty

(shown above) Masayoshi Son, CEO, SoftBank Telecom.   image source: unitedliberty

Indian smartphone maker Micromax is reportedly in talks to sell a significant stake to a group of investors led by Japanese Telecom Softbank. The deal would land SoftBank with a 20% stake of Micromax for up to $1 billion.

If the deal comes through, as per the speculations, the affordable smartphone maker Micromax could be valued at $5 billion.

Both the companies have not commented on it, but SoftBank had previously been vocal about its intentions of investing $10 billion in the tech emerging market of India, as it bought a strategic stake in online retailer ‘Snapdeal’ last year, and also made more investments in other Indian companies like Ola and Housing .

Micromax entered the Mobile phone segment in 2008, and has been successful at providing smartphones at affordable rates. The company based on the outskirts of New Delhi, has become a direct rival of Korean giant Samsung in the Indian market.

According to research firm Canalys’ report Micromax became the leading smartphone maker in India in terms of shipments, beating Samsung for the first time. However the Korean electronics soon disputed the figures.

Majority of stakes in Micromax is held by its Founders, private equity firms ‘Sequoia Capital’ and ‘TA Associates’ along with few minor investors have a stake in the company. This investment by SoftBank might help Micromax in keeping its stand against the foreign budget smartphone makers entering India.

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