Ecommerce giant Flipkart announced that its wholesale entity in India has created a joint-venture with Ace Turtle, an omnichannel enablement platform and have together secured licensing rights for Toys“R”Us and Babies“R”Us.
The joint venture has made a strategic arrangement with WHP Global, the controlling shareholder of toy and baby brands, Toys“R”Us and Babies“R”Us. With this partnership, both the brands will be available to consumers online through sellers in India.
Yehuda Shmidman, Chairman & CEO at WHP Global and Toys“R”Us stated, “We are excited by the tremendous potential of this new partnership, as India is one of the fastest-growing consumer markets in the world with real spending power among a rapidly growing population. We look forward to working closely with Flipkart and the Ace Turtle team to build Toys“R”Us and Babies“R”Us into the leading destination for toy and baby products in India.”
Flipkart aims to make use of its reach and expertise in technology and customer experiences, along with Ace Turtle’s omni-channel platform.
Toys”R”Us is an American toy, clothing, and baby product retailer owned by Tru Kids, Inc. and various others, founded in April 1948. It generated more than $2 Bn in global retail sales annually through nearly 900 branded stores and ecommerce businesses in over 25 countries.
According to industry data, India’s toy industry comprises of ~4,000 small and medium enterprises with exports limited to $100 Mn, the company said in its statement. “This strategic arrangement will endeavour to create new and exciting growth opportunities for local toys’ manufacturers/sellers in India including MSMEs,” the company mentioned in its statement.
This puts Flipkart in direct competition with Reliance which acquired Hamleys last year.
On side lines, Flipkart is in talks to raise at least $3 Bn from investors including SoftBank Group Corp. and several sovereign wealth funds to target a valuation of $40 Bn ahead of its planned IPO that is expected to take place by March 2022.