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Info Edge (India) – Largest Player in Online Recruitment

Info Edge Ltd, most popularly known as Naukri.com is one of a kind startup focused company. The company invests in Technology led startups besides its core business of recruitment portal.

Quick Links to Info Edge (India). Click to navigate directly to the paragraph in detail:

(A) About Info Edge (India)

Info Edge (India) Limited operates only on Internet. Its Corporate Office is in Noida, Uttar Pradesh and Registered Office is in Delhi.

It was founded by Sanjeev Bikhchandani in 1995. Further, the company runs an online job portal Naukri.com, a matrimony website Jeevansathi.com, a real estate classifieds platform 99Acres.com and an educational website Shiksha.com.

Alos, in FY21 the Company completed 25 years of existence. Above all, Info Edge has invested in Technology based Startups like Zomato having 15.29% stake as on 31-Dec-21, Policy Bazaar having 12.79% stake as on 31-Dec-21, and many others.

(B) Journey Since Inception

  • 1997: www.naukri.com launched.
  • 2000: ICICI Information Technology Fund makes a private equity investment of about INR 72.9 million in Info Edge (this investment was later novated in favor of ICICI Emerging Sectors Fund). Secondly, Quadrangle business acquired
  • 2004: 100% ownership of Jeevansathi Internet Service Private Limited achieved
  • 2005: www.99acres.com was launched. Further, Private equity investors, Klenier PerkinsCaufield and Byers and Sherpalo LLC, acquired, through Murugan Capital and Sherpalo Mauritius LLC, respectively, 5% of Info Edge’s pre-issue equity share capital by means of a secondary purchase.
  • 2006: International operation launched with www.naukrigulf.com. Also, Info Edge got listed publicly in India.
  • 2008: Launched www.shiksha.com. Investment was made in Applect Learning Systems Pvt. Ltd. (www.meritnation.com).
  • 2009: Launched www.firstnaukri.com.

(C) Management of Company

(i) Mr Sanjeev Bikhchandani - Founder and Executive Vice Chairman

Mr. Sanjeev Bikhchandani is the Founder of Info Edge.

Moreover, he has experience of working at advertising position at Lintas India Limited, at a marketing position at HMM Limited (now known as Glaxo SmithKline), and a senior management position at CMYK Printech Private Limited (owner of The Pioneer newspaper).

In addition he has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from St Stephen College, Delhi University in 1984 and a PGDM from IIM-Ahmedabad in 1989.

Remuneration received by Mr. Sanjeev Bikhchandani in the FY21 was Rs. 2.89 Crore being, 0.26% of Net Sales and ~0.18% of Net Profit

(ii) Mr Hitesh Oberoi - Co-Promoter, Managing Director and CEO

Mr. Hitesh Oberoi is the Co-Promoter, Managing Director & CEO of Info Edge.

Moreover he has an experience of 4 years with Hindustan Unilever Limited where he last worked as a Regional Planning and Distribution Manager for its Ice Cream Division. Also, he has almost 18 years of experience in the Internet Industry.

Additionally he is also a Founder an on the Board of Trustees of Ashoka University.

Also, he has a Bachelor of Technology degree in Computer Science from Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi in 1994 and an MBA from IIM, Bangalore in 1996.

Remuneration received by Mr Hitesh Oberoi in the FY21 was Rs 2.88 Crores being, 0.06% of the Net Sales and  0.18% of Net Profit

(iii) Mr Chintan Arvind Thakkar - Whole-time Director & CFO

Mr. Thakkar is a Chartered Accountant by profession and has around two-and-a-half decades of experience in Finance, Consulting and Operations.

Moreover, his experience includes creating innovative business models, joint ventures, structuring of transactions, merger and acquisition integration, fund raising, capital structuring, licensing models and large deals ranging right from software licenses to real estate.

However, Prior joining Info Edge in 2014, he worked with Computer Associates.

Remuneration received by Mr Chintan Arvind Thakkar in the FY21 was Rs 2.36 Crores , being 0.21% of Net Sales and 0.15% of Net Profit.

(D) Shareholding Pattern

Info Edge (India) shareholding
Info Edge (India) more than 1% shareholders

(E) Revenue Segmentation & Business of Info Edge (India)

Info Edge (India) segment wise revenue

During the past 5 FYs, around 65-70% of the Revenue if contributed by the Recruitment Solutions Segment of the Company.

(i) Recruitment Solutions - core business of the Company

a) Naukri.com

This is the company's flagship brand and India's largest online job website. Moreover, its business model depends on job listings and employer branding or visibility advertisements, on the one hand, and resume database access, on the other.

Additional features of the website include - job seeker services such as candidate services which are free for job seekers value added features such as resume writing, highlighting, etc, for job seekers, and tools to search the database of resumes and job application screening programs for employer and recruitment consultant customers. Further, Google Ad sense and mobile revenues contribute to the revenue as well.

b) Firstnaukri.com

This is one of the largest job search networks for college students and recent graduates.

Moreover, the site is exclusively targeted at entry-level hiring. Also, it maintains the largest database of colleges and students across various courses in India and facilitates handshakes between relevant employers and prospective students.

c) Naukrigulf.com

Naukrigulf.com is Info Edge's foray into the Gulf market., people in the Gulf looking to find jobs in the Gulf.

Further, it is fully localized with an Arabic jobseeker section and its iOS and Android apps have been clocking top rankings since inception. Further, the site is supported by regional sales offices in the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Bahrain along with a successful inside (or remote) sales operation based out of Noida.

d) Quadranglesearch.com

As a complement to the online recruitment business, Quadrangle offers off-line placement services to middle and senior management, with revenues based on a success fee model.

(ii) 99acres (Real Estate)

One of India's first online platforms to cater to the real estate market, 99acres.com has a pan India listing of properties for sale, purchase and rent, spanning 25 plus cities.

Moreover, the Q3 FY22, 99acres has maintained leadership position in this segment.

However, it caters primarily to real estate developers, builders and brokers. Further, 99acres.com uses property listings, builders' and brokers' branding and visibility through microsites, home page links and banners to bring together and connect builders, brokers, dealers and interested buyers/sellers.

Competitors: Google, Facebook, and local classifieds sites (like Olx and Quikr) compete for this segment.

(iii) Others

a) Matrimony (Jeevansathi.com)

Jeevanshathi has Leadership in the North markets (Q3 FY22).

It has a revenue model which is free to list, search and express interest, but pay to get contact information. Similarly In the widely diversified social landscape of India, this has translated into a highly fragmented market.

While focusing on gaining market share, there is emphasis on maximizing the flow of paid customers to its social network.

b) Education (shiksha.com)

Shiksha.com was launched in May 2008. Although, it is primarily a portal for information exchange; it connects the education seeker with the education provider.

Moreover, its Campus Connect platform enables a direct touch point for higher education aspirants with current students across colleges in India.

(F) Revenue Source for Naukri

For Q3 FY22 ~90% of overall Naukri revenue is B2B revenues. B2B includes Resume database access, Job Posting (response management), Employer branding (visibility), RMS, eHire - Resume short listing and Walk-ins

The remaining B2C includes revenue from Job seeker service.

Further, if we see industry-wise ~50% of consultants caters to IT/ ITeS industry. Accordingly, IT and ITeS contributes ~42-44% of overall revenues for Q3 FY22.

(G) Geographical Segmentation: Info Edge (India)

More than 93% of the Total Revenue of Info Edge (India) is from within the Country. Domestic segment revenue includes sales and services to customers located in India and Overseas segment is services primarily in Gulf countries.

Geographical Spread (Q3 FY22)

Info Edge (India) Ltd. - Sales Office Map

In fact, the Company has 64 branch offices in 45 cities in India. Also, it has 2752 sales/ servicing/ client facing staff.

(H) Investment Portfolio

Info Edge (India) Ltd. - Investment Portfolio

Additionally, to promoting businesses internally, Info Edge recognizes opportunities that a burgeoning internet sector provides. Moreover, the company is invested in early stage start-up ventures to support the growth of these entrepreneurial driven activities, gain from enhanced value creation.

(I) Subsidiaries of the Company

Info Edge (India) subsidiaries

(J) Operational Parameters

(i) Cost Structure: Info Edge (India)

Info Edge (India) cost structure as % of Net Sales

The different business portfolios are strongly supported by Info Edge’s centralized functions. Further, these being, primarily human resource management and development, sales network, finance, legal, treasury and the IT Infra team.

Similarly, these functions leverage economies of scale and scope to provide cost effective centralized support to all the different businesses under the Company. .

(ii) Employee Cost as % of Net Sales

Info Edge (India) employee cost as % of net sales

During the Last 10 years Employee cost as % of Net Sales remained around 40-50% most of the years.

(iii) General and Administration Expenses as % of Net sales

Info Edge (India) general and administration expense as % of net sales

General and Administration expense as % of Net Sales declined FY15 onwards. It was 4.58% of the Net Sales in FY21.

(iv) Selling and Marketing Expenses

Info Edge (India) selling and marketing expenses as % of net sales

During the last 10 Years the Selling and Marketing expense as % of Net Sales were in the range of 14-18% as a % of Net Sales (other than FY17).

(K) Financial Parameters of Info Edge (India)

Info Edge (India) financial parameters

Revenue grew at CAGR 12% p.a. over FY12 to FY21. However, the PAT grew at CAGR 37% p.a. from FY12 to FY21. The Company has Zero (NIL) Debt since past 10 FYs.

In FY21, Share of net loss of Associates and Joint ventures reduced from 7,29.0 Cr in FY20 to 2,11.87 Cr in FY21 primarily in view of reduction in cash burns of key investments including Zomato and PolicyBazaar. Thus, FY21 there was profit after tax at Rs 1,621 Crore, it increased at 235% from FY20 primarily in view of lesser share of net loss of Associate/ JVs and exceptional gain in FY21.

(L) Management Discussion & Concall Highlights

The financial performance of the Company's business was adversely affected by the lockdown in H1 FY21. Eventually by Q4 FY21, the things revived as hiring demand picked up in the IT and IT enabled services sector, even as some traditional sectors continue to be under stress.

Acquisitions in FY21

  • In June 2021, Info Edge (India) Ltd completed the 100% acquisition of Bengaluru-based Zwayam Digital Private Limited (Zwayam). However Zwayam is engaged in the business of providing SAS based end-to-end recruitment shortlisting and screening solutions to clients. For instance Zwayam revenue for FY2021 was about Rs 64.60 million.
  • Moreover this acquisition will help the company to further increase the base of recruitment offerings to HR Managers.
  • In July 2021, the company completed another 100% acquisition of Bengaluru based Axilly Labs Private Limited (Doselect). However DoSelect is engaged in the business of providing technical assessment services to its clients for recruitment and learning purposes. Moreover It delivers these services via its technical assessment platform ‘doselect.com’. Therefore this acquisition would help the Company to offer a new variety of services under its flagship brand Naukri.com. Above all DoSelect revenue for FY2021 stood at about Rs 42.30 million.

Concall Highlights - Jan 31 , 2022

Financial Highlights Q3 FY22

  • Recruitment Segment - In Q3 FY 22 the recruitment segment the links were Rs. 356.5 crores up 77% from Q3 of FY21, Operating EBITDA stood at Rs. 178.7 crores up 67.8% from Q3 of FY21.
  • Real Estate - While revenue grew in real estate from Rs 44.9 crores in Q3 of 21 to 58.6 crores in Q3 of 22, EBITDA stood at loss of Rs 44.4 crores up from a loss of 6.5 crores over last year from the same period.
  • Matrimony business - Billings declined by 6.5% year year on year in Q3 to Rs 24.5 crores, Operating EBITDA losses stood at Rs 37.2 crores in Q3 of FY 22 against a loss of 27.6 crores last year same quarter.
  • Education Segment - In Q3 Revenue in Shiksha grew 51.4% year on year and 94% compared to Q3 of 2020 and stood at Rs 25.7 crores and made an EBITDA Rs 2 crores during the quarter versus an EBITDA of 80 lakhs in Q3 of last year.

Other Concall Highlights

  • As per the Management, the real estate type of sector will grow at 10%, 15% p.a. at least for the next few years. Also, it depends on if real estate remains affordable, and if interest rates mean modest.
  • Further the Company is leader in Real Estate Segment. However The management try to protect its position in this market.
  • Further, Recruitment in IT remained strong, driven by record hiring in the sector on big deal wins and high attrition. Although Margins for the Recruitment business stood at 59.9%. However The management highlighted that there is massive wage inflation in the market.
  • Further, there was continued business momentum in 99acres. Rental listings grew better overall, and demand from small towns was also good. Further, due to low prices, higher personal incomes, and low-interest rates drove the demand momentum, demand is expected to be strong.
  • Also, the company currently has no plans to offer end-to-end services for 99acres.

(M) Opportunities and Strengths of Info Edge (India)

i) Strong Brand & First Mover

Info Edge India products have strong brand recognition in the Computer Services industry. Similarly this has enabled the company to charge a premium compare to its competitors in Computer Services industry.

Further, the Company has First Mover Advantage, in the increasingly crowded market place. Also, the new products are rapidly increasing Info Edge India market share in the Computer Services industry.

ii) Brands catering to different customers segments

Firstly, Info Edge India extensive product offerings have helped the company to penetrate different customer segments in Computer Services segment. Moreover, also helped the organization to diversify revenue streams.

iii) Market Leadership Position 

Info Edge India has a strong market leadership position in the Computer Services industry. Similarly It has helped the company to rapidly scale new products successes.

iv) New Education Policy of Government

The New Education Policy (NEP) devised by the Government of India opens more opportunities for online courses as their credits get recognised. There are now several new universities being set up, many of which are in the private sector offering different kind of courses. Students need a platform to better understand these offerings. As study indicates more than 45% of students will be open to online degree from premium colleges/ universities in near future. With higher penetration of internet among students and ease of search and discovery offered by the platform, more students are coming online for their education, awareness and information. All these factors are necessitating the greater use of the kind of services provided by shiksha.com.

(N) Weakness: Info Edge (India)

i) Competition

All portals face competition directly on the online space as well as the offline. Although, Info Edge continuously tracks competition in every one of its businesses and stays prepared for the challenges.

ii) Employee Attrition

Being a knowledge driven business, significant increase in attrition may affect the course of the business. although, TThe Company is focusing on making workflows as process-driven as possible.

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References:  Annual Reports, News Publications, Investor Presentations, Corporate Announcements, Management Discussions, Analyst Meets & Management Interviews, Industry’s Publications.

Disclaimer: The report only represents personal opinions and views of the author. No part of the report should be considered as recommendation for buying/selling any stock. Thus, the report & references mentioned are only for the information of the readers about the industry stated.

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