Ease of Doing Business for MSMEs: Walmart-owned Flipkart’s business-to-business (B2B) marketplace for MSMEs and kiranas — Flipkart Wholesale has added grocery category into its app around five months after it went live in September 2020 with the fashion segment. Small businesses will be able to procure goods across sub-categories including personal care, staples, beverages, cleaning and laundry, snacks, confectionery, and packaged foods from more than 350 brands including HUL, P&G, Coca-Cola, Pepsi, ITC, Nestle, Dabur, etc., with the new category launch. The grocery operations will begin with Gurugram through Flipkart’s 1 lakh square feet fulfillment centre in Bilaspur – a census town near Gurugram. The grocery vertical will be accessible to retailers in other parts of the National Capital Region and will be further rolled out in other cities in the coming few months.
Flipkart hoped the new addition in the app would “MSME suppliers and give regional grocery brands a fillip through a pan-India supply chain integration,” said Adarsh Menon, Senior Vice President and Head – Flipkart Wholesale in a statement. Flipkart had launched the Wholesale marketplace with the acquisition of the wholesale business of its parent company Walmart in India in July last year. Walmart India Pvt Ltd operated 28 Best Price cash-and-carry wholesale stores offering nearly 5,000 items. Flipkart claimed that the wholesale business currently supports more than 6,500 employment opportunities across India since its launch in September. Currently, clothing and footwear products via the app are offered in 23 cities.
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According to the company, more than 95 per cent of the merchandise sold across its wholesale stores is locally sourced, “enabling the development of the local supplier ecosystem”. MSMEs and kiranas also have access to credit facility from Flipkart to manage their cash flow along with micro-market level B2B and B2C insights to understand local customer demands and buy from Flipkart Wholesale accordingly.
During its four-month operation in 2020, Flipkart Wholesale claimed a 75 per cent month-on-month increase in customer base and a 90 per cent jump in monthly transactions. Moreover, 50 per cent monthly growth was reported in fashion category suppliers while it “enabled 2.5 lakh listings on its platform since its launch,” along with one in every five customers on Flipkart Wholesale coming from Tier-II and III cities. The wholesale arm of the company, Flipkart India Private Limited has reported a 12 per cent jump in its FY20 revenues to Rs 34,610 crore from Rs 30,931 crore in the last financial year while losses had decreased 18 per cent to Rs 3,150 crore in FY20 from Rs 3,835 crore in FY19.