SoftBank investment to raise bKash’s valuation to $2bn
SoftBank Vision Fund II is injecting $250 million for more than 10% stake in bKash, according to Dr Ahsan H Mansur, chairman of Brac Bank, the majority stakeholder in the country’s leading mobile financial services (MFS) provider. The development has already raised bKash’s valuation to over $1,700mn and as soon as the Japanese tech investment giant’s subscription for the fresh shares completes, the valuation would increase to around $2 billion, equivalent to more than Tk17,000 crore, he said in a telephone interview with The Business Standard on Saturday. SoftBank Vision Fund II is set to own a 20% stake in bKash and it would buy less than a 10% stake from the undisclosed existing shareholders other than Brac Bank which has already announced that the deal would not reduce its shares in the MFS provider. When Ant Financials bought bKash’s 20% stake, the IMS provider was valued at $880mn and it took less than four years to more than double its valuation. During Ant Financials’ investment, bKash had less than 4 crore customers, Tk1,880crore in annual revenue and Tk2.5 lakh crore in transactions through cellphone accounts annually. The customer base has now crossed the 5.1 crore mark, the revenue stood at over Tk3,000crore and the transactions at Tk5.2 lakh crore in the last 12 months. Brac Bank shares soared to the upper circuit breaker at Tk48.7, gaining 9.9% at the Dhaka Stock Exchange on Thursday following the bKash investment disclosure.
Bangladesh offers best incentives for investors
The Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI) has urged French investors to take note of Bangladesh as an ideal destination for relocating industries. Manufacturers of Bangladesh are adopting greener technologies and modern production methods aligned with the 4th industrial revolution and challenges of climate change. among the world’s top 10 green garment factories, the top 7 were located in Bangladesh. MA Momen, vice president of the FBCCI, emphasised regular networking among the business people of Bangladesh and France to enhance bilateral trade and economic activities.
bKash donates Tk 1.0m to BURO Healthcare Foundation
bKash has donated Tk 1.0 million to BURO Healthcare Foundation of BURO Bangladesh, one of the leading microfinance institutions in the country, to facilitate healthcare for the marginalized people, says a press release. BURO Bangladesh has been working to provide low-cost medical services to the rural and poor people through BURO Health Care Foundation. The donation from bKash will be spent for the rural and poor people’s health care.
Walton Hi-Tech net profit soars 126pc
Walton Hi-Tech Industries, a leading local brand in electronics and electrical sector, saw a steep growth in its turnover for the fiscal year (FY) 2020-21 which aided a significant growth in its net profit. Riding on increased turnover, the company’s net profit soared 126 per cent or Tk 9.13 billion to stand at Tk 16.39 billion for the FY 2020-21 from Tk 7.26 billion for the previous FY. Of the net profit, the lion’s share of Tk 15.16 billion came from the sales of refrigerators and air conditioners. For the FY 2020-21, the company has reported its sales turnover of over Tk 71.96 billion, against above Tk 42.55 billion for the FY 2019-20. According to the annual report of the FY 2020-21, Walton saw 754.54 per cent growth in exports over the previous year. The company’s sponsor-directors hold 99.03 per cent shares, institutions 0.38 per cent, foreigners 0.10 per cent and general public 0.49 per cent as of September 30, 2021.