BI Year-Ender: Five surprising startup acquisitions in 2016



2016 will be notoriously known for the unexpected it brought with it; from elections to deaths, it has been the year of more endings than beginnings. In the startup ecosystem, too, we saw many shocking acquisitions and while we do know that most start-ups will shut down or get acquired, we didn’t expect some popular names to quit the rat-race so soon. To give you a perspective, in 2015 114 startups were acquired as compared to the 148 in 2016, as off now.

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We created a list of five unexpected startup acquisitions that had us wondering what went wrong.

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1) Jabong

1) Jabong
This July saw Flipkart acquire Rocket Internet portfolio company- Jabong in a move that was announced by a tweet from Sachin Bansal.Apparently, Alibaba, Amazon, Snapdeal, Aditya Birla Group and Future Group were all in the line to take over the ailing Jabong, but Myntra was the one to swoop in and conquer in a reportedly $70 million deal.

2) Goibibo

2) Goibibo
The online travel sector is riddled with multiple players now, compared to when only MakeMyTrip was the major player in this sector, a few years back. MMT announced the Goibibo acquisition in September, making it the biggest group in this sector with a valuation of $1.8 billion. The deal is supposedly going to be closed by this year for $720 million.

3) Citrus Pay

3) Citrus Pay
Naspers-backed PayU Global acquiring Citrus Pay from Bombay was the biggest deal in fin-tech space this year. PayU got Citrus Pay for a good $150 Mn, which might just be more than worth it after the government's demonetization move.

4) Zo Rooms

4) Zo Rooms
Oyo Rooms acquired Zo Rooms in another case of the first getting to the second. The hotel aggregator chain became a serious player this year in the online hotel industry. Oyo Rooms has got an investment of $187.65 million, till now. The deal went through at a 7% share swap, for the transfer of Zo's assets and inclusion of some of its employees in OYO's payroll.

5) BabyOye

5) BabyOye
In the e-commerce sector we saw Firstcry becoming the biggest baby-products selling company with its acquisition of BabyOye from Mahindra & Mahindra in October. FirstCry has now been valued at $300-350 million, according to sources. The deal will nearly double its valuation from about $155-160 million last year.

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