Alibaba Group Holdings is looking to buy, or invest in, an Indian logistics company specialising in deliveries for online retail players, and towards this end has held talks with Delhivery and Xpressbees Logistics, according to two people aware of the development.
The Chinese company is also chalking out a plan to get Paytm to spin off its marketplace business and plans to top it up with more capital, said a third source. Alibaba and its affiliate Ant Financial together own about a 40% stake in the Noida-based company. These moves are part of an effort by Alibaba to build what founder Jack Ma calls the “iron triangle” of businesses in ecommerce, payments and logistics, and position it to challenge dominant incumbents Flipkart and Amazon. Alibaba is also entering India at a time when funding options for local players have dried up, and sales growth is flattening as online retailers pull back on discounts. This gives it an opportunity to cherry-pick assets in the country.