Reliance Retail said on Friday it has acquired a controlling stake in 25-year-old Indian search and discovery firm Just Dial for $469 million.
The Indian retail giant, which leads the market, said it has acquired 41% stake in publicly listed Just Dial for $469 million and will make an open offer to acquire an additional 26% stake later. VSS Mani, founder and chief executive of Just Dial, will continue his leadership role at the firm, both the companies said in a joint press release.
Just Dial offers local search and e-commerce services through its website, mobile apps and telephone line. Users in India can inquire about local plumber, details for hotels, and housekeeping services among other things by just dialing 8888888888.
The decades-old firm — which prior to entering the public markets raised about $102 million from Tiger Global, Elevation Capital, Sequoia Capital India, Sapphire Ventures, and Nalanda Capital — has built a massive database whose results are so useful and relevant that they often populate top search queries on Google and other search engines.
The service is free for users, but Just Dial charges businesses and individual service providers a fee for listing.
“Nearly 25 years ago, we had a vision to build a connected single platform dedicated to providing fast, free, reliable and comprehensive information to our users and connect buyers to sellers,” said Mani.
“Our vision has evolved to not only provide search and discovery but drive commerce across merchants through our B2B (Read more...)