Logistics for MSMEs: Ahead of the festive season this year, Amazon is planning to more than double its network of fulfillment centres in India with the expansion of its existing nine centres and launching of 11 new centres. The expansion will increase storage capacity at the company’s fulfillment centres by 40 per cent while the total storage capacity will stand at 43 million cubic feet for its 8.5 lakh sellers, the majority of which are MSMEs. The announcement made by Amazon on Thursday said the network will be spread across a floor area of more than 10 million square feet – more than the land size of 125 football fields. “Expanded fulfillment network will enable sellers to minimize their capital expenditure and focus on building the selection for customers, while Amazon supports them with the storage, processing, and delivery of their orders.”
“Excited about the expansion plan of our fulfillment network across India, ahead of the festive season. Along with offering 43 million cubic feet of storage space to our sellers, this will create tens of thousands of direct & indirect work opportunities,” tweeted Amit Agarwal, Senior Vice President and Country Manager, Amazon India. The new centres will be based in Maharashtra, Gujarat, Bihar, Assam, Rajasthan, West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh, Telangana, Tamil Nadu, and Karnataka. Amazon said some of these fulfillment centres will be ready ahead of its Prime Day sale event, which is on July 26-27, while the rest of them be operational ahead of the festive season.
“I am happy to see the focused investments by Amazon across Indian states in building and scaling the state-of-the-art infrastructure. This will play a critical role in supporting MSMEs to jump-start from the economic disruptions of the COVID-19 pandemic and accelerate their journey towards being digital entrepreneurs,” Amazon’s statement quoted Amitabh Kant, CEO, Niti Aayog as saying.
Amazon, which is facing an antitrust probe along with Flipkart by the competition watchdog Competition Commission of India (CCI) for allegations around anti-competitive practices, had recently announced the launch of its first Digital Kendra in Surat, Gujarat for digitization of local MSMEs. The offline center is to help MSMEs become aware of online selling, avail third-party services such as shipping and logistics support, cataloging assistance, digital marketing services, GST, and taxation support to establish their online presence. According to Amazon, it has cumulatively digitised 2.5 million MSMEs in India since its India foray in 2013.