New Delhi-based online retail payments platform Pine Labs is reportedly in talks to acquire Bengaluru’s digital gift card firm Qwikcilver Solutions, as the former looks to creating a strong footing in the gifting space.
Pine Labs is looking to acquire Qwikcilver for over $100 Mn in a mix of cash and stock deal, according to an ET report. Once the acquisition deal materialises, the existing investors in the company are expected to cash out, while the founders of the company may stay on with the team.
Although Pine Labs declined to comment, the company’s source told Inc42 that it will soon come up with an official statement. Qwikcilver did not respond to Inc42‘s queries till the time of publication.
Launched in 2008 by Kumar Sudarsan, TP Pratap and Bhaskar Vasudevan, Qwikcilver helps retail and corporate customers to enhance their sales, brand and loyalty through card-based interventions such as Gift Cards, Loyalty Cards, Discount Cards, Frequency Cards, Credit Cards. It also provides a cloud-drive software-as-a-service for various brands.
The company claimed to have handled gift-card transactions worth INR 3K Cr ($422 Mn) with 160 Mn transactions in 2016. In the same year, Qwikcilver had raised undisclosed funding led by Sistema Asia Fund, the proprietary fund of Russian conglomerate Sistema. Prior to that, Amazon had invested $10 Mn in Qwikcilver Solutions. Overall, the company is believed to have raised $20 Mn. It also counts Accel Partners and Helion Venture Partners among its investors.
The acquisition of Qwikcilver may give Pine Labs an edge in offering gift cards to small-and medium-sized stores with card payment facilities. According to a recent report, the Indian gift card market is expected to reach $80 Bn – $85 Bn by 2024. Of which, e-gift cards are expected to account for a lion’s share with $70 Bn.
Pine Labs was launched in 1998 by Lokvir Kapoor. The Sequoia Capital-backed fintech company counts many large corporates among its clients. It provides an integrated payment gateway services to its partners. It claimed to be processing about 450 Mn transactions worth over $15 Bn annually, as of March 2018.
The digital retail payments platform announced reported a 55% increase in revenues and 64.6% increase in expenses for the fiscal year 2017-18. Till date, the company has raised $223 Mn from investors like Temasek, PayPal, Sequoia Capital, Madison India Capital among others.