Flipkart-Walmart deal: Will a monster-sized private equity exit bring more?

Call it the King Kong of private equity (PE) deals in India; the acquisition of Flipkart by US retail giant Walmart is worth more than the top 14 PE exits that have taken place in the past five years. 

A closer look indicates that the more significant deals have been distributed among e-commerce, technology, telecommunications, financial services, pharmaceuticals and the automotive industry (see table). 

Of the largest exits by financial size, five were in financial services, four in technology and e-commerce, two in telecom, two in automotive, one in pharmaceutical space. 

The trend is abundantly clear – the biggest deal in the past five years which involved Bharti Airtel and was valued at $1.5 billion happened at the tail end of 2017. Two other billion-dollar plus deals also took place in the past two years on the basis of a favorable macroeconomy as compared to deals before 2015 and valued at $500 million or less. Crystal-ball gazing aside, the tea leaves point to bigger transactions in the future and the entry of more private equity money.


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