New Delhi. Payments company PhonePe has filed a formal complaint with SEBI against Ventureeast Proactive Fund-II (VPF). The company says the complaint is based on the alleged violation of SEBI’s code of conduct, in relation to which the company had said that VPF’s recent ‘side dealing’ with Affle was to ‘spoil’ the majority acquisition of OSLabs by PhonePe. . CNBC TV18 had earlier reported that PhonePe is in talks to acquire a majority stake in domestic smartphone operating system IndusOS.
It is known that this complaint by SEBI in India is in addition to the suit that PhonePe has already filed in the Singapore High Court against Ventureeast and Afl. The lawsuit claims that VPF deliberately defrauded PhonePe by involving PhonePe and OSLabs in the sale of its shares in OSLabs in favor of PhonePe, even though it sold the same shares to Affle in a side deal without the knowledge of OSLabs and PhonePe. was sold to. Ex-date VentureEast still has to answer CNBC TV18’s questions during the legally binding no-shop period.
What does the CEO of PhonePe say in this matter?
PhonePe CEO and Founder Sameer Nigam said in a statement, “As founders, we have always adhered to the highest standards of legal and ethical integrity by our investors. But these standards should also apply to investors of startups. I believe that in this case, VPF has not only violated SEBI’s code of conduct, but it has also acted in complete dereliction of its fiduciary duties as a large shareholder of IndusOS. By deliberately derailing IndusOS’s acquisition of PhonePe, a deal that the three OSLabs founders also believe is in their company’s best long-term interests, VPF has also hurt OSLabs’ long-term interests. We believe it is important to expose such unethical practices by VPF for the sake of the larger startup ecosystem. We have a very strong case and are confident that we will win on both fronts, and hopefully create a strong deterrent against those trying to bully young startups in the process.Affle accuses PhonePe of trying to undermine IndusOS
Effle, on the other hand, has accused PhonePe of trying to undermine IndusOS and has also filed a lawsuit in a Singapore court. According to sources, the PhonePe – Indus OS deal is likely to be valued at $60 million, but Afl Global, an investor who holds a 23% stake in Indus OS, says it will value the company at $90 million. This has prompted Afle to take legal action against the founders of Indus OS, while PhonePe has filed a lawsuit in a Singapore court against the marketing tech company to block the deal.
Our investment of over $20 million from OSlabs exceeds $90 million
“Affle Global Pte Ltd (“AGPL”) is a long-term investor in OSlabs Pte Ltd (registered entity of Indus OS) and our investments in OSlabs over $20 million exceed $90 million,” the investor said in a statement. We believe that the founders of Walmart-owned PhonePe and OSlabs are colluding to adversely affect our existing shareholder/investor rights on the basis of unfair practices. We believe that PhonePe should strictly maintain the highest level of governance standards, respect the fair valuation of OSlabs’ investments existing shareholders and be fair in full compliance with the existing shareholders’ agreement, the Constitution of Singapore and the Companies Act perform procedures. AGPL has no inclination to support a low-ball $60 million valuation-based PhonePe transaction for OSlabs. We value our investments based on OSlabs’ $90 million valuation and are confident that OSlabs will unlock greater growth in the near future,” said Affl. Indus CEO Rakesh Deshmukh did not respond to questions. Sources told CNBC TV18 that PhonePe has also bought 30 per cent stake in Indus OS from other investors and is looking to take a majority stake as part of the deal.