Technology for MSMEs: The e-commerce marketplace is expected to cross Rs 2 crore in turnover by end of the current financial year 2020-21 with khadi masks, khadi fabric, and honey being the top-selling product products.
Khadi. Representational image
Technology for MSMEs: Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC) will launch its e-commerce marketplace around New Year’s day after running in beta mode for four months and will have around 700-800 products, according to KVIC Chairman Vinai Kumar Saxena. Entering the e-commerce turf dominated by Amazon, Flipkart, and vertical marketplaces such as BigBasket, and Grofers, KVIC has products currently listed across 58 categories selling groceries, footwear, apparel, herbal medicines, spices, and more. “We launched the beta portal in August and are now rolling it out completely on the 1st or 2nd of January. Currently, it is being managed by KVIC itself while the new marketplace will be operated by a franchisee. The beta portal has done well as we were able to serve more than 22,000 customers so far,” Saxena told Financial Express Online.
The e-commerce marketplace is expected to cross Rs 2 crore in turnover by end of the current financial year 2020-21 with khadi masks, khadi fabric, and honey being the top-selling product products. “There is a huge demand for khadi products amid PM Modi’s appeal for local products. Out of 2,672 khadi stores across India, around 200 have already started with e-marketing. Now we are encouraging them to do this,” said Saxena.
The launch comes around KVIC’s recent crackdown on fake khadi products being sold on e-commerce marketplaces such as Amazon, Flipkart, Snapdeal, and others as claimed by the commission. It had said in September that it forced such marketplaces to remove more than 160 web links selling products in the brand name of Khadi. KVIC had stated then that it had sent legal notices to more than 1,000 firms using Khadi India brand name to sell fake products and “thus causing damage to its reputation and the loss of work to Khadi artisans,” according to its statement. The action had also led to shutting down of multiple retail stores selling fake khadi products.
However, to continue fulfill the growing demand of khadi products amid Covid, KVIC “in august decided to launch our own marketplace to serve customers across India as all stores were closed but demand was there. We launched with masks and gradually added products,” said Saxena. The discounts on the portal are being decided by KVIC instead of khadi stores. “We cannot jump the MRP and indulge in activities like deep discounting.”