Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance sees a $700 billion opportunity in New Commerce

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Updated: August 13, 2019 7:15:10 AM

Calling New Commerce as a new business opportunity of $700 billion, chairman Mukesh Ambani said, “The main purpose of New Commerce is to completely transform the unorganised retail market, which accounts for 90% of India's retail industry.”

Reliance Industries, online-to-offline, New Commerce, Mukesh Ambani, Internet of Things, Artificial IntelligenceAddressing the shareholders, Ambani said, Reliance Retail has crossed Rs 1.3 lakh-crore turnover to cement its position as India’s largest retailer.

Reliance Industries (RIL), which is planning to create India’s largest online-to-offline (O2O) e-commerce platform called New Commerce, plans to use tech-enabled partnerships that would link producers, traders, small merchants, consumer brands and consumers.

Calling New Commerce as a new business opportunity of $700 billion, chairman Mukesh Ambani said, “The main purpose of New Commerce is to completely transform the unorganised retail market, which accounts for 90% of India’s retail industry.” He said three crore merchants and kirana shop owners, who generate direct and indirect livelihoods for over 20 crore people, “form the backbone of India’s commerce ecosystem”.

Ambani said RIL is looking to deploy blockchain, Internet of Things (IoT), Artificial Intelligence and other new technologies on a pan-India basis, which will modernise the smallest neighbourhood kirana shop to become a future-ready digitised store.

Announcing its own merchant point of sale (PoS) solution, called Jio Prime Partner PoS, Ambani said this digital platform is designed for inventory management, customer relationship management, financial services and other services. The company has undertaken beta trials with thousands of merchants across multiple locations in the country and established the premise of New Commerce with significant increase in sales and improvement in margins for participating merchants, he said.

Addressing the shareholders, Ambani said, Reliance Retail has crossed Rs 1.3 lakh-crore turnover to cement its position as India’s largest retailer. “It is four times larger than the second-largest retail player. It is larger than all the other major retailers put together. Our two consumer businesses now collectively contribute nearly 32% to the consolidated Ebitda, up from 2% five years ago,” he said.

Ambani said the operating discipline has resulted in a three-fold rise in per store productivity for Reliance Retail in the last five years. Reliance Retail registered over 500 million footfalls last year and expanded its footprint at a rate of eight stores per day, opening a total of 3,000 new stores in FY19. The company has presence in nearly 7,000 towns and cities.

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