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Restaurant listing and reviews venture Zomato in talks to raise $100M

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Gurgaon-based Zomato Media Pvt Ltd, the company behind the popular restaurant listing and review site Zomato.com, is in talks to raise $100 million (Rs 625 crore) in a fresh funding, says a Reuters report quoting its co-founder and CEO Deepinder Goyal.

This comes close on the heels of Zomato sealing its sixth acquisition in as many months and its biggest yet of restaurant information and table booking property Urbanspoon in the US for $52 million (Rs 325 crore).

In November last year, Zomato had raised $60 million in funding at a pre-money valuation of $600 million from existing investors Info Edge (India) and Sequoia while adding Vy Capital as a new investor. However, bulk of this was used to seal the deal with Urbanspoon.

Moreover, having entered the US market Zomato would now need more cash to take on the might of the market leader Yelp.

When contacted to clarity if the firm intends to add new investors or stick to its existing backers in the new round, a Zomato spokesperson said, "We have no further comments to add to what has already been reported."

Currently, Info Edge owns 50.1 per cent in Zomato, on a fully converted and diluted equity base. Indeed, if it intends to retain its majority holding in the firm it would need to bring at least $50 million of the proposed $100 million.

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When contacted, Sanjeev Bikhchandani, founder & vice chairman of Info Edge, said that there has been no discussion on the Zomato board about any further fundraising.

"These reports are somewhat speculative. Having said this all of the current investors in Zomato are very supportive of the company and will do what it takes to help the company realize its destiny," he added.

Zomato was founded in 2008 by IIT Delhi alumni and ex-Bain employees Goyal and Pankaj Chaddah. An online and mobile restaurant discovery service, Zomato provides information such as menus, directions, contact details, pictures and user reviews.

To date, Zomato has raised more than $113 million, over multiple rounds of funding from investors including Vy Capital, Info Edge and Sequoia Capital.

Zomato's previous overseas acquisitions include Cibando in Italy, MenuMania in New Zealand, Lunchtime in the Czech Republic, Obedovat in Slovakia, and Gastronauci in Poland.

(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)

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