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JioMart expands to 200 cities in India as it strives to compete with Amazon and FlipKart

JioMart, the food platform owned by Mukesh Ambani’s Jio platforms, expanded its services to 200 cities over the weekend. Deliveries had previously been piloted in three areas in and around Mumbai.
The move comes just days after Jio – part of Ambani’s extensive conglomerate Reliance Industries – secured more money to drive the billionaire’s technical ambitions. The company has raised more than $ 10 billion in recent weeks, including a $ 5.7 billion investment from Facebook (FB) which includes a connection between JioMart and WhatsApp. This deal is still undergoing regulatory approval.

JioMart’s expansion also comes as millions of Indians remain locked up because of the coronavirus pandemic.

“Never waste a crisis, they say!”
; Damodar Mall, chief executive of grocery retail at Reliance Retail, tweeted Saturday. Template added to the Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba (BABA) “flourished” during the 2003 SARS pandemic, something that founder and chairman Jack Ma has acknowledged.
Amazon (AMZN) and Walmart owned (WMT) FlipKart is the two dominant e-commerce platforms in India. Both companies operate in hundreds of cities across the country and supply goods such as smartphones, electronics and clothing.

But JioMart’s launch “is a cause for concern for Amazon and Flipkart, [because they] are not particularly strong in the grocery business, “said Satish Meena, an analyst with research firm Forrester. Both companies launched food deliveries online last year.

Amazon and FlipKart have also encountered difficulties in delivering orders across India during the Covid-19 pandemic due to varying levels of restrictions from one city to another, he said.

FlipKart had to temporarily suspend services in March when the nationwide lockdown began, and Amazon had to limit orders as it responded to increased demand.

Amazon and FlipKart did not immediately respond to the request for comment. They both currently supply important goods in India.

Jios & # 39; s online food platform expanded services to 200 Indian cities, as large swathes of the country remain under lockdown due to Covid-19.

JioMart launched at the end of last year, with the goal of getting 30 million Kiranas, small neighbors and pop shops online.

Grocery accounts for 70% of the Indian retail market, and more than 90% of the market is disorganized and run by kirana stores, according to investment research firm Bernstein. The total retail market is expected to double in size from $ 676 billion in 2018 to nearly $ 1.3 trillion in 2025, according to Bernstein.

India’s online food market is comparatively small, worth about $ 3 billion this year, according to Forrester. But the company said the number is growing rapidly, because the pandemic is changing people’s shopping habits quickly.

Bernstein and Forrester analysts say JioMart is well-positioned to disrupt the grocery market online as it can pick up deliveries from Relian’s brick and mortar stores. Reliance is India’s largest retail operator. If JioMart succeeds in getting Kiranas online and organized, it will also have a hyperlocal supply and logistics chain that it can use to meet demand.

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