Tata Sons has acquired a majority stake in online grocery seller BigBasket, putting the Indian conglomerate in a direct race with e-commerce players Amazon, Walmart’s Flipkart, and Reliance.

The stake was bought by Tata Digital, a unit of Tata Sons. Tata on Friday declined to give further details on the deal, while BigBasket did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment.

India’s antitrust body had in March approved the acquisition of up to a 64.3 percent stake in BigBasket by Tata Digital.

Media reports have said the deal is worth about Rs. 9500 crores and will involve buying out Chinese giant Alibaba’s stake.

The deal comes as e-commerce sales, especially of food and groceries, have accelerated in India as the COVID-19 pandemic spurred a big shift to online shopping.

Tata, that has interests in products spanning from salt to luxury cars to software, has been planning to launch a “super app” that will tie in all its consumer businesses, according to media reports.

Last month, BigBasket database of over 20 million customers were allegedly leaked on the dark Web. The leaked database reportedly included email addresses, phone numbers, and hashed passwords of affected customers. The data also allegedly carried physical addresses and date of birth of users. Although the database includes user passwords in an encrypted form, a hacker claimed to have decrypted some of the leaked passwords.

The alleged BigBasket database was reportedly put on the dark Web by a hacker group infamously known as ShinyHunters. Cyber-security researcher Rajshekhar Rajaharia told Gadgets 360 that the leaked database is associated with the breach that BigBasket itself confirmed in November last year.

It’s Google I/O time this week on Orbital, the Gadgets 360 podcast, as we discuss Android 12, Wear OS, and more. Later (starting at 27:29), we jump over to Army of the Dead, Zack Snyder’s Netflix zombie heist movie. Orbital is available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Amazon Music and wherever you get your podcasts.


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