With a market share of close to 50%, Flipkart has helped millions of sellers, merchants, and small businesses join India’s ecommerce revolution. Whether you’re a business owner, marketer, or content creator, the history of Flipkart holds valuable insights into the power of innovation and a customer-first approach.

At Business2Community, we’ve consulted a range of sources to track Flipkart’s journey from selling books online to becoming an Indian ecommerce industry giant. Read on to discover 15 years of milestones, innovations, collaborations, and more.

A History of Flipkart – Key Dates

  • Flipkart was launched by IIT Delhi computer science graduates Sachin Bansal and Binny Bansal in 2007.
  • Flipkart surpassed 100 million registered users and became the first Indian mobile app to cross 50 million users in September 2016.
  • In a landmark $16 billion deal, Walmart acquired a 77% majority stake in Flipkart in 2018.
  • In 2023, Flipkart recorded its highest revenue at over ₹56,013 crore, or $6.83 billion.
  • As of 2024, Flipkart has a loyal customer base of over 600 million customers.

Who Owns Flipkart?

Flipkart is owned by American retail giant Walmart. Walmart ownership increased from approximately 75% as of January 31, 2023, to approximately 85% as of January 31, 2024. The company has its headquarters in Bangalore.

Flipkart’s story began in 2007 when Flipkart founding duo Binny Bansal and Sachin Bansal (no relation). Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) graduates and former Amazon employees, invested  ₹400,000 or $9,673, at the time. into launching an online bookstore.

In 2009, the startup raised $1 million from venture capital firms Accel Partners and $10 million from Tiger Global Management. This was followed by $160 million in funding from media company Naspers in 2013 and an additional $360 million from existing investors.

The momentum continued with Flipkart raising $1.4 billion in funding from Tencent – founded by fellow tech entrepreneur Ma Huateng –  eBay, and Microsoft four years later. In a landmark deal, Walmart bought a 77% stake in Flipkart for $16 billion in 2018, valuing the company at $21 billion post-money. During the acquisition, Softbank, eBay, and Naspers sold their shares to Walmart. Flipkart founder Sachin Bansal also sold his 5% stake in Flipkart to Walmart for $1 billion.

Flipkart went on to raise another $1.2 billion in a Walmart-led investment round in 2020. A year later, Flipkart raised $3.6 billion in a funding round that placed Flipkart’s valuation at $37.6 billion.

In September 2023, Walmart acquired Flipkart’s remaining stakes from Accel Partners, Tiger Global, and Binny Bansal to become the company’s largest shareholder. Flipkart founder Binny Bansal received an estimated $650 million from the deal.

Who is the Flipkart CEO?

The CEO of Flipkart is Kalyan Krishnamurthy. He took over after co-founder and CEO of Flipkart Binny Bansal resigned following allegations of serious personal misconduct.

Bansal was accused of sexual misconduct by a former employee. There was no corroborating evidence found for the allegations and although Bansal stepped down as CEO, he remained on the board until January 2024, when he resigned his seat due to a conflict of interest with another ecommerce platform he was launching.

Flipkart CEO

In 2018, Krishnamurthy was also appointed as the Flipkart Group CEO. Throughout his tenure, Krishnamurthy has prioritized the growth of Flipkart. Under his leadership, Flipkart’s commerce business model has expanded to include:

  • New categories like Grocery and other verticals like Fintech.
  • Innovations like a voice assistant and inclusive regional language interfaces.
CEO Tenure
Sachin Bansal 2007-2016
Binny Bansal 2016- 2017
Kalyan Krishnamurthy 2018- Present

Growth and Development of Flipkart

Flipkart Group is a leading Indian ecommerce company. As of 2024, the ecommerce giant boasts:

  • A customer base of over 500 million and 1.4 million sellers.
  • Over 150 million products across more than 80 categories.
  • Capabilities to deliver across 100% of serviceable PIN codes in India.
  • Thriving subsidiaries like Myntra, Flipkart Wholesale, Flipkart Health+, Ans Commerce, Cleartrip, and PhonePe.

Below, we track Flipkart’s journey from startup to key player in the Indian online retail space.

2007-2010: Flipkart’s Customer-Centric Approach Fuels Initial Growth

Ecommerce giant Flipkart was launched as an online bookstore in January 2007. By October, Flipkart founders Sachin and Binny had shipped their first order.

2008 saw the opening of Flipkart’s first office in Bengaluru. By then, the company had successfully shipped over 3,400 orders. Recognizing the potential for further growth, Flipkart expanded its product categories and began offering a range of electronic devices, including mobile phones, tablets, and laptops.

Flipkart Founders

Capitalizing on its initial success, Flipkart opened offices in Delhi and Mumbai. Founders Binny and Sachin identified yet another significant hurdle to their growth plans. At the time, only 0.5% of the population used credit cards and could shop online.

In a game-changing move, Flipkart introduced a Cash-on-Delivery payment option, making online shopping accessible to a larger customer base. To boost customer satisfaction, Flipkart also introduced a 30-day return policy.

Flipkart remained focused on customer satisfaction, launching its own logistics arm, eKart, in June 2010. In addition to enhancing its delivery capabilities, the company expanded its product range across categories like music, movies, games, electronics, and mobiles.

2011-2013: Flipkart Boosts Accessibility Through Mobile

To provide even more convenient payment options for its growing customer base customers, Flipkart launched its digital wallet in March 2011.

Expanding its horizons, Flipkart also ventured into new shopping categories such as:

  • Cameras
  • Computers
  • Laptops
  • Large appliances
  • Health
  • Personal care
  • Stationery

By April 2011, the 30-day replacement policy had been introduced, giving shoppers greater peace of mind. The company had also acquired Chakpak and digital content platform Mime360, providing Indian consumers access to digital content.

Flipkart delivery

The year proved to be successful, with the company reaching a registered user base of 2 million and generating revenue of ₹50 crore or $10.8 million at the contemporary exchange rate.

In a strategic move to boost its presence in the electronics market, Flipkart acquired online electronics retailer Letsbuy in February 2012. Making online shopping accessible to even more shoppers across the country, Flipkart launched its mobile shopping app the next month.

As part of its ongoing diversification strategy, the ecommerce company expanded into fashion, perfumes, watches, menswear, toys, posters, baby care, and other lifestyle products. That year, Flipkart even made first position on the list of top 20 ecommerce companies in India.


By March 2013, the company had successfully shifted to a marketplace model and opened up its platform to sellers. The move garnered an extremely positive response, pushing sales to record levels on the Flipkart marketplace.

In yet another display of customer-centricity, Flipkart introduced the Next Day Shipping Guarantee and launched PayZippy, an online payment solution for merchants and customers.

2014-2016: Flipkart Diversifies for Major Growth Gains

In October 2014, Flipkart held its first-ever Big Billion Day. Although the event generated a lot of interest, it was marred by fake deals, stock shortages, and technical problems. Disgruntled customers took to Twitter to vent, with #flopkart trending on the platform.

Big Billion Day

2014 saw Flipkart launch Flipkart First, a premium membership program granting customers access to exclusive features like faster deliveries. In keeping with its mission to make shopping convenient for online shoppers, Flipkart also introduced scheduled delivery and a Same Day Delivery Guarantee.

Key acquisitions for the year included:

  • Myntra, a popular online fashion retailer, to strengthen its presence in the fashion and apparel segment.
  • Jeeves, an after-sales services provider, to install and fix products for customers.

The company was also the first Indian internet retailer to achieve $1.9 billion in gross merchandise value (GMV).

Flipkart faced social media backlash in early 2015 after a controversial deal with phone network Airtel sparked concerns about net neutrality. With consumers threatening to uninstall the Flipkart app, the online retailer ultimately pulled out of the deal.

In April 2015, Flipkart acquired mobile ads platform AdIquity and mobile marketing firm Appiterate. Post-acquisition, Appiterate’s mobile marketing automation platform was integrated into Flipkart’s mobile app, enhancing the platform’s targeting capabilities.

flipkart mobile

Recognizing the internet connectivity challenges faced by millions of consumers in India, Flipkart launched Flipkart Lite in November 2015. This version of the mobile app guaranteed customers a seamless Flipkart shopping experience, even in low connectivity areas.

The company’s efforts paid off, with revenue more than doubling from ₹772.5 crore ($126 million at the time) in 2014 to ₹1,952 crore ($304 million at the time) during the 2015-16 financial year. However, due to heavy discounting and large marketing and promotional expenditures, Flipkart reported a loss of ₹2,306 crores ($346 million at the time) for the year ended March 31, 2016.

As part of its diversification strategy, Flipkart acquired UPI-based payments startup PhonePe and Jabong, a major fashion retailer in April 2016. The company also invested in Qikpod for locker deliveries.

A few months later in August, Flipkart made online shopping even more accessible with the launch of No-Cost EMI. Deemed a breakthrough in the consumer financing space, No-Cost EMI was a monthly installment-based payment scheme with no processing fees or hidden costs for online shoppers.

By September 2016, Flipkart had hit significant milestones. Not only had it surpassed 100 million registered users,  it had also become the first Indian mobile app to cross 50 million users. Additionally, the company emerged as the leader in smartphone sales, exceeding over 109 million units sold for the year.

2017-2019: Flipkart Sees Record-Breaking Investment

Celebrating a decade of innovation, Flipkart moved to its new headquarters in Bengaluru’s Embassy Tech Village. The company also welcomed its first non-founder CEO. 2017 also brought with it Flipkart’s largest round of investments at the time. The company received over $1.4 billion in funding from Tencent, eBay, and Microsoft.

Although Flipkart’s revenue increased by 29% to ₹19,854 crores ($1.3 billion at the time) in 2017, the company was yet to make a profit. It reported a 68% year-over-year jump in losses.

Adding to Flipkart’s financial woes was a ruling made by the income tax department to reclassify its marketing expenditure as capital expenditure. This resulted in a hefty ₹110 crore ($7 million at the time) tax bill backdated for for the financial year 2015-16.

Forging ahead with its plans for growth, Flipkart recorded a GMV of $7.5 billion and net sales of $4.6 billion in May 2018, marking a significant 50% year-over-year increase in both cases.

That same month, Amazon made a formal offer to buy a majority stake of 60% in Flipkart. However, the merger, which would have faced intense scrutiny from India’s antitrust regulator, fell through.

Flipkart CEO

Instead, US retail giant Walmart succeeded in its bid, paying $16 billion for a majority stake in Flipkart. The landmark deal marked the world’s largest-ever ecommerce acquisition.

In a move that left employees stunned, Flipkart CEO and co-founder Binny Bansal resigned that July. This came after the founder was placed under investigation over sexual harassment allegations. Bansal was later cleared of all charges and returned to his board position.

By August 2018, Walmart’s investment in Flipkart was complete. While both companies agreed to retain Flipkart’s operating structure in India, Flipkart’s top management would now report directly to US Walmart ecommerce CEO Marc Lore. In addition, an eventual Flipkart IPO was planned as part of the online retailer’s long-term strategy.

Flipkart and Walmart

To boost brand awareness, Flipkart Fashion featured Bollywood celebrities like Alia Bhatt and Ranbir Kapoor in its India Ka Fashion Capital campaign.

Throughout the year, Flipkart made several strategic moves to bolster its competitive position. Flipkart Video was launched to compete with Amazon’s premium video streaming service, Amazon Prime. The company also invested in Shadowfax to expand its hyperlocal delivery capabilities. And, in a joint investment to transform India’s fresh produce market, Walmart and Flipkart invested in Ninjacart.

2020-2022: Flipkart Steps Up its Strategic Acquisitions

Flipkart opened two of its largest fulfillment centers in Haryana, creating more than 5,000 new local jobs in January 2020.

Six months later, the Flipkart Group announced the launch of Flipkart Wholesale. As part of the launch, the company announced its acquisition of a 100% stake in Walmart India.

After pledging to fully transition to electric vehicles by 2023, Flipkart became the first Indian ecommerce marketplace to join the Climate Group’s EV100 initiative in August.

Flipkart campaign

Throughout 2020 Flipkart acquired:

  • Gaming startup Mech Mocha to strengthen its gaming strategy.
  • Augmented reality company Scapic to enhance user experience.
  • A 7.8% stake in Aditya Birla Fashion and Retail (ABFRL).
  • A 27% stake in Arvind Youth Brands, a subsidiary of Arvind Fashions Ltd, to strengthen its mid-market fashion business.

By the end of 2020, the company had surpassed 1.5 billion visits per month. It also reported a 45% growth in monthly active customers and a 30% increase in transactions per customer.

During the first quarter of 2021, Flipkart became one of the first ecommerce Indian companies to receive the ISO22301 certification for Business Continuity from the British Standard Institute.

By July 2021, the company had introduced voice search in Hindi and English across its platform, enabling customers to conveniently voice search over 150 million products online across 80+ categories. It also offered the Flipkart experience in eleven Indian languages, opening up an even larger customer base for sellers, small businesses, and artisans.


In the second half of 2021, Flipkart’s strategic deals included the acquisition of Cleartrip, a leading online travel technology company. This was followed by the launch of Shopsy, a digital platform designed to give local entrepreneurs the opportunity to start their own online businesses with no upfront investment.

April 2022 saw Flipkart launch India’s largest modern fulfillment center in Haringhata, West Bengal, creating employment opportunities and market access for millions of sellers and artisans across its supply chain.

Fulfillment center in Haringhata

To explore Web3, Metaverse commerce, NFT-related use cases, virtual immersive stores, play-to-earn, and other blockchain-related use cases, Flipkart also launched Flipkart Labs.

Following a partial separation announced in December 2020, Flipkart and PhonePe became completely separate entities in December 2022. This was done to allow each company to maximize its growth in coming years.

2023-Present: A Flipkart IPO Draws Closer

Flipkart ushered in 2023 with Flipkart Green, an estore for sustainable products. The new platform, featuring over 40 brands, made it easy for customers to discover and shop for organic, sustainable, and environmentally conscious products.

In the days leading up to its 10th Big Billion Days Shopping Festival, Flipkart found itself in trouble over an ad featuring Bollywood legend Amitabh Bachchan. The Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) filed a complaint with the Central Consumer Protection Authority (CCPA), accusing the ad of being misleading.

The CAIT claimed that the ad falsely suggested that deals and discounts on mobile phones were exclusive to Flipkart and not available in offline stores. This, they argued, unfairly disadvantaged small retailers. Despite the negative press, Flipkart’s 10th Big Billion Days Shopping Festival set a new record with over 1.4 billion customer visits, a 2.5x increase in transactions, and a 4x increase in engagement compared to the pre-festive period.

Flipkart ad

In 2023, Flipkart recorded its highest revenue at over ₹56,013 crore ($6.83 billion at the time). However, due to financial issues and global economic uncertainty, the Flipkart IPO planned for the year was postponed.

Marking a significant shift in leadership, Flipkart co-founder Binny Bansal resigned from his board position in January 2024. Binny had recently sold his remaining stake in the company for an estimated $1-1.5 billion.

Following a four-year investigation by the Competition Commission of India, Amazon and Flipkart were charged with violation of antitrust laws in May 2024.

According to the CCI, both companies leveraged their substantial financial resources to offer heavy discounts to consumers, resulting in the shutdown of thousands of small businesses. The official findings report and hearing date are yet to be shared with both parties.

Meanwhile, as per a June 2024 Reuters report, the much-awaited Flipkart IPO could come in two years. With a net worth of around $36 billion as of May, Walmart plans to delay the Flipkart IPO until:

  • Flipkart launches its domicile in India.
  • The company achieves profitability.
  • Flipkart reaches a valuation of $60-$70 billion.

Over the years, Flipkart’s logo has changed to represent its identity and aspirations.

2007-2015: The Yellow Shopping Cart

Flipkart’s first logo was set against a dark blue rectangular shape with rounded corners. The word “Flipkart” in a bold, white, lowercase font was paired with the word “.com” in a lighter, yellow lowercase font. To highlight Flipkart’s identity as an efficient online retail company, a yellow shopping cart, and a thin yellow streak were added to the design.

Flipkart logo

2015-2018: The Yellow Shopping Bag

In March 2015, Flipkart updated its logo to a light blue sans serif wordmark featuring a yellow shopping bag with a blue “F” icon. The logo aimed to capture the elements of youthfulness and playfulness.

Shoumyan Biswas, Senior Director of Marketing at Flipkart had this to say about the company’s new brand identity, “Our logo marries the strength of our existing brand identity and imbibes the youthful, active and inclusive personality of the brand that we are building and moving towards.”

Flipkart logo

The Future of Flipkart

As a leader of the Indian ecommerce market, Flipkart’s growth highlights the importance of a customer-centric approach. By focusing on building an inclusive and accessible platform, Flipkart has built a loyal customer base of over 600 million customers.

Ecommerce major Flipkart also highlights the power of innovation. By pioneering industry-first innovations like Cash-on-Delivery, No-Cost EMI, and easy returns, the company made online shopping more accessible and affordable for millions of Indian consumers.

As the company works towards profitability and an IPO, future plans include leveraging artificial intelligence (AI) to personalize services for users, reduce seller costs, and handle logistics more efficiently. The company also plans to scale key verticals like Cleartrip.

Leveraging its history of innovation and customer-centricity, Flipkart is well-positioned to capture an even greater share of India’s booming ecommerce market.


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