New Delhi: Info Edge (India) Ltd, which owns leading jobs portal Naukri.com and matrimonial website Jeevansathi.com, said it will look at potential acquisition opportunities if valuations correct further, and may also invest in start-ups related to its business model.
“There are not many acquisition targets currently in India, but we may look at the potential opportunities in the Internet space that are aligned to our business model if valuations correct,” Info Edge co-founder and CEO Sanjeev Bikhchandani said.
But he said there was no chance the company will get acquired. “We had been approached as potential takeover target prior to going public. But, we have always made it clear that the company is not for sale and, moreover, there have been no approaches ever since the company’s listing,” Bikhchandani said.
Not for sale: Info Edge chief executive Sanjeev Bikhchandani says there is no chance of the company getting acquired. (Ramesh Pathania / Mint)
When asked whether the signs of a slowdown in the economy and industry could present the company with acquisition opportunities, Bikhchandani said Info Edge will look at it if the downturn continued.
He also said the firm will focus on India instead of looking to expand overseas, as there were enough growth opportunities in the country itself. “But, if something interesting comes up, we would take a call at that point of time,” he said.
Info Edge’s other properties include real estate portal 99acres.com, career guidance site Asknaukri.com, education portal Shiksha.com, online brokerage site Allcheckdeals.com and professional networking site Brijj.com.
Bikhchandani said Info Edge is mostly into the “handshake enabling business” and will continue to stay with this business model.
The company has more than Rs300 crore cash in hand, which is boosting its morale to look at start-ups to invest.
“Acquisition is not in our mind right now, but if at all, we may look at acquisition in the Internet platform,” he added.
Bikhchandani started Info Edge in 1990 and Naukri.com was launched in March 1997. The company went public with a Rs170 crore initial public offering in November 2006, which was oversubscribed 55 times.
“While Naukri.com has witnessed a growth rate of about 56%, other business activities (non-Naukri) have been growing at a higher pace at about 70-80%,” he pointed out.
At present, Naukri.com has a market share of nearly 50%, followed by Monster.com and Timesjobs.com, which account for about 35% and 15%, respectively, he said.
Info Edge plans to invest about $5-10 million (Rs21-42 crore) in its education portal Shiksha.com. The website launched in June has more than 85,000 listings on institutes, courses, events, admissions, results and scholarships.
For fiscal 2008, Info Edge posted a net profit of Rs55.48 crore on revenues of Rs239.66 crore.