Paytm likely to get $1.5-2 bn in fresh capital; PharmEasy may merge with Ascent

Paytm likely to get $1.5-2 bn in fresh capital; PharmEasy may merge with Ascent
Photo Credit: Photo Credit: VCcircle
28 Mar, 2019

One97 Communications Ltd, the parent company of digital payments firm Paytm, is raising $1.5-2 billion from its existing investors SoftBank Vision Fund and Alibaba’s financial affiliate Ant Financial, a media report said. The round may see new investors also put in money in the payment company, the report said.

The new round will take the company’s valuation up to $16-18 billion, The Economic Times reported, citing persons in the know. Paytm was valued at $10 billion when it last raised capital from Warren Buffett’s Hathaway in August last year while a secondary sale a few months ago valued the company at $16 billion, the report said, citing undisclosed persons in the know.

One97 operates the digital payments and e-commerce businesses through separate entities. Currently, SoftBank owns 19% stake and the Alibaba group holds 38% in One97 Communications, said the ET report.

PharmEasy-Ascent Health merger

Online drug delivery platform PharmEasy and pharmaceuticals delivery company Ascent Health are in talks for a potential merger, The Economic Times reported. The boards of both the firms have reportedly given an in-principle nod for the all-stock transaction, the report added.

If the deal goes through, the combined entity will be the largest online pharmaceutical player which will have strong control of its distribution and supply chain channels, the ET report stated.

Separately, South African tech conglomerate Naspers may invest $100-150 million in the merged entity at a valuation of $400-500 million, the report said.

Ascent Health was one of the lead investors in PharmEasy’s $16 million Series B round in March 2017.

Ascent provides pharmaceutical companies retail and institutional distribution channels besides managing the pharmaceutical supplies for hospital chains.

PharmEasy is an e-pharmacy that connects patients with pharmacy stores. It uses a tech-enabled lead-generation platform that helps customers get cheaper diagnostic tests. It also helps them digitise their medical records.

Stanza Living in talks to raise capital

Delhi-based student accommodation platform Stanza Living is in negotiations with new and existing investors to raise up to $50 million in a fresh funding round, business daily Mint reported, citing two persons in the know.

The new investors include US- and Asia-based private equity funds and hedge funds, which will likely to lead the round while its existing backers Sequoia Capital, Accel Partners and Matrix Partners will participate in the round, the report added.

The company, on Tuesday, raised $4.4 million (Rs 30 crore) in venture debt from Alteria Capital.

It provides managed and shared fully furnished accommodation to students, particularly those moving to a new city. Stanza Living also has partnerships with restaurants, fitness centres and other such institutions, through which it provides its residents rewards. Besides accommodation, the startup offers students the opportunity to connect with alumni, internship opportunities as well as guidance on online study materials.