Naver lays foundation to enter fast-growing Indian market

2023.09.21 10:19:01 | 2023.09.21 15:07:59

[Photo by Park Hyung-ki]이미지 확대

[Photo by Park Hyung-ki]



The enterprise value of eight Indian startups, which South Korean tech giant Naver Corp. invested in with the goal of pioneering a new market, has been confirmed to exceed 6 trillion won ($4.50 billion). This also signifies that Naver is ready make a full-fledged entry into India, one of Asia’s rapidly growing markets.

Maeil Business Newspaper learned on Wednesday that the enterprise value of eight Indian startups that Naver invested in via the India-specific fund “Paramark KB Fund I” in 2021 as an anchor investor hit 6.39 trillion won as of August 2023.

The eight startups are promising content, e-commerce, and fintech-related companies in India, including Slice (fintech), makeO (dental care), Cashify (recommerce), Leap (edtech), Purplle (commerce), Ayu Health (healthcare), Kuku FM (audio content), and Wakefit (furniture). Of these companies, Slice, Leap, and Purplle have been recognized as unicorns valued at over $1 billion. The rest of the companies are also on the verge of becoming unicorns, according to sources from the investment industry.

More significantly, the fact that Naver made these investments across a variety of industries in India suggests that there will be a significant synergy between Naver, which has holdings in the content and e-commerce business sectors, and the investments. An official from NAVER said, “It is correct that we participated as an anchor investor with the goal of entering the growing Indian information technology (IT) and startup market,” adding, “We plan to continue our investments from a mid- to long-term perspective.”

Anchor investors play a significant role among investors, with a large proportion of investment and the ability to influence the decision-making of fellow investors, thereby acting as a driver for private investments.

By Hwang Soon-min and Yoon Yeon-hae

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