Ease of Doing Business for MSMEs: Amid Modi government’s crackdown on Jeff Bezos’ Amazon India business and Walmart-owned Flipkart for not displaying country of origin information on products sold, the two on Sunday announced early numbers for their year’s biggest sale events. While Amazon claimed the first 48 hours of its Great Indian Festival (GIF) to be “the biggest ever opening for its sellers and brand partners”, Flipkart said that its sellers’ growth in around two days of The Big Billion Days equaled their growth during the six days of last year’s sale. Snapdeal also, reporting three-day performance of its Kum Mein Dum Sale that began October 16, said that 65 per cent of orders received so far was by sellers based in cities beyond the top five metropolitan areas of India. MSMEs, which account for the majority share of these marketplaces’ seller base, from Tier-II and beyond cities saw maximum traction.
Amazon said that over 1.1 lakh sellers received orders during the 48 hours, beginning with Prime early access on October 16, on its marketplace while more than 5,000 sellers registered sales worth Rs 10 lakh in “SMB pre-festive lead up & first 48 hours” of the sale. Also, 66 per cent of sellers who got orders were from Tier-II & III cities. “Over 1.1 Lakh sellers receiving orders; 66% sellers, 91% of new customers, and 66% of new Prime sign-ups from small towns; shopping in 5 Indian languages, and orders from over 98.4% of India’s pin-codes in just 48 hours – it’s truly Bharat’s biggest celebration on Amazon ever!” said Manish Tiwary, Vice President, Amazon India in a statement.
Flipkart, on the other hand, claimed that of more than 3 lakh sellers participating in the sale, around 60 per cent belonged to Tier-II and beyond regions. It added that the festive period has seen more than 70 of its sellers turned Crorepatis and around 10,000 became Lakhpati through early access and the three days of the sale. Also, Flipkart Wholesale and the Best Price stores saw more than 35,000 retailers and 18,000 kiranas operating in fashion, fashion accessories, and grocery categories during October 16 and 17.
On the other hand, Snapdeal said that sellers based in Delhi NCR, Mumbai Metropolitan region, Kolkata, Chennai, and Bengaluru accounted for close to 35 per cent of the total number of orders so far, the greater share of orders was received by sellers based in smaller cities.
“There’s one bucket of consumers who are less affluent and who’re not shopping online. They seem to be trading up and buying from e-commerce because of availability, safety, convenience, more selection. And then there is another bucket of more affluent consumers who are online buyers. We are seeing them trade down because of all the economic pressure…Which is why in the last few months, we have added 6 million new buyers on our platform. In a way, the core insight of why we are calling our Diwali celebration as “Kum Mein Dum” is that core consumer insight,” Kunal Bahl, Co-founder and CEO, Snapdeal had told Financial Express Online in an interview recently.
The Department of Consumer Affairs under the Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, on Friday, had issued notices to Amazon and Flipkart on seeking clarification on why they are not displaying mandatory declarations including country of origin on goods sold on their platforms as per the Legal Metrology Act. The two companies have been asked for “explanation” within 15 days of the receipt of the notice, “otherwise the action should be initiated against you with the available documents as per provisions of Act and Rules,” the notice signed by Legal Metrology Deputy Director Ashutosh Agarwal read. The government had earlier this year asked sellers on its public procurement portal Government e-Marketplace (GeM) followed by private marketplaces to state ‘country of origin’ for products listed. The decision came amid growing clamour among consumers to boycott import and use of Chinese goods after the border clash between the armed forces of the two countries.