SoftBank-backed logistics unicorn Delhivery Pvt. Ltd is planning an initial public offering (IPO) in 12-18 months, a top executive said, joining a list of Indian startups looking to raise money and pave exits for their investors. The Gurugram-based company is waiting for upcoming rules on foreign listing but would prefer to list in India, chief business officer Sandeep Barasia said.
The company had earlier approached consultants and advisory firms to plan a listing, Barasia said in an interview.
“Two years ago, when we were trying to go public, it so happened that the timing of our decision to go public coincided with the Indian general elections, and it was probably not the best time to go public because a lot of focus was going to be on elections…plus, there was already a private capital pool that was available, so we basically, pushed it back. Our view is that in the next 12-18 months, we see us going back into the public market,” Barasia added.
“If we have the choice to list anywhere without any restrictions, then we will choose to list in the market most suitable for us at that time. Delhivery is an Indian company and we will be representing India wherever we will list. We have to wait for the Sebi guidelines, and if we have full freedom on where we can list, then we will pick the best market, and that best market might be still India for us,” Barasia added.
However, Delhivery may face regulatory roadblocks, including one on profitability track record, to go public in India, and may have to wait for clarity in upcoming guidelines.
Delhivery became a unicorn in 2019 when it raised $413 million in a Series F round led by SoftBank Vision Fund, along with existing investors Carlyle Group and Fosun International. It was then valued at $1.5 billion.
SVF Doorbell (Cayman) Ltd, which was set up last year to hold Delhivery’s investments from SoftBank Vision Fund LP, now owns 25% of Delhivery’s India unit. Delhivery recently amended its Articles of Association (AoA) to include the scope for a public listing, as per documents sourced from Registrar of companies.
Jadhav added that all the special rights associated with Delhivery’s VC and PE investors like Softbank and Carlyle Group will cease to exist on the day of listing, and simultaneously Delhivery will also have to convert the entire company into a public limited company in the AoA itself before going for an IPO.
Tarush Bhalla contributed to the story.
This article was first published on livemint.com.