Tata Digital to invest in CureFit, names founder Mukesh Bansal president

 Tata Digital to invest in CureFit, names founder Mukesh Bansal president

Tata Digital Ltd is investing $75 million (Rs 546 crore) in fitness startup CureFit Healthcare Pvt. Ltd, as the diversified Tata Group continues to build its digital businesses after taking control of online grocer BigBasket.

The unit of Tata Sons Pvt. Ltd said Monday it has signed a preliminary pact to invest in CureFit, subject to completion of diligence process and other approvals. It didn’t specify whether it was acquiring a controlling stake or whether the amount included a primary capital infusion or involved any secondary share purchases as well.

As part of the deal, CureFit founder and CEO Mukesh Bansal will join Tata Digital in an executive role as president. Bansal will continue in his leadership role at CureFit.

“The CureFit partnership with its industry-leading platform in fitness and wellness aligns very well with our overall healthcare proposition where fitness is increasingly becoming an integral part of a consumers’ life,” said N Chandrasekaran, chairman of Tata Sons.

Bansal had started CureFit five years ago along with former Flipkart executive Ankit Nagori. Before launching CureFit, Bansal had started online apparel retailer Myntra, which was later acquired by Flipkart.

“Being part of Tata Digital will enable us to nationally scale up our offerings for our customers,” Bansal said.

CureFit has previously raised a large amount of funding from a number of marquee investors. Last year, it secured about $110 million in a funding round led by Singapore state investor Temasek. Its other backers include Ascent Capital, Accel, Chiratae Ventures and Kalaari Capital.

However, the company has been hit hard by the stay-at-home restrictions due to the coronavirus pandemic. Last year, after India imposed a strict nationwide lockdown, the company laid off about 800 people and shut many gyms.

For the Tata Group, the deal is in line with its ambition to grow its digital services businesses as it seeks to stave off challenges by billionaire Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Industries, Walmart-owned Flipkart and Amazon.com Inc.

Earlier this year, Tata Digital acquired a controlling stake in BigBasket, India’s biggest online grocer. The Tata group firm is also looking to acquire online pharmacy 1mg.

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