Flipkart has entered hyperlocal space by announcing the launch of Flipkart Quick on Tuesday. The company will initially launch the Flipkart Quick as a pilot project in selected areas of Bengaluru including Whitefield, Panathur, HSR Layout, BTM Layout, Banashankari, KR Puram and Indiranagar. Later, it will reportedly expand this service to other cities.
Flipkart Quick will deliver 2,000 products hailing from important categories like Grocery, Fresh, Dairy, Meat, Mobiles, Electronics Accessories, Stationery Items and Home Accessories. This, by the way, is part of the first phase and the product categories may increase further in second phase of the pilot project. To avail this newly launched service, as per their convenience Bengaluru residents can choose either 90 minute delivery or 2 hour delivery slot.
Notably, Flipkart will seek to leverage the services of Ninjacart (a B2B platform for Vegetables and Fruits) for this pilot project. After all, Flipkart owns a strategic stake in Ninjacart.
This is Bengaluru based e-commerce major’s second shot at the hyperlocal space. The company had entered this space in October 2015 by launching the Nearby app. Through Nearby app, the company was aiming to deliver grocery products to Bengaluru residents within the span of one hour. However, due to low customer traction and demand, the app was shut down within six months of its launch.
Flipkart’s second shot at hyperlocal is clearly dictated by the challenging market realities, with the entry of Jiomart especially shaking things up in India’s e-commerce industry. The Reliance Industries owned e-commerce venture, which is barely few months old, is already clocking 2,50000 orders per day and has already overtaken its competitors BigBasket, Grofers and Amazon Pantry on daily orders.
According to reports, Jiomart is planning to add new verticals like electronics, fashion and medicines before the festive season of Diwali. Inclusion of these verticals will essentially make Jiomart a full-fledge e-commerce platform and will obviously bring enormous competitive pressure on Flipkart as well as Amazon.
Ecommerce industry experts claim that Jiomart’s disruptive nature has surely unnerved Flipkart & Amazon and both companies will have to respond to ensure that Mukesh Ambani’s venture doesn’t do the same kind of disruption that it managed to do in India’s telecom industry.
Amazon’s recent unconfirmed talks to acquire 9.9% stake in Reliance Retail, which is a part of Jiomart, is possibly triggered by the new dynamics emerging in India’s e-commerce industry in the post Jiomart scenario.
As for Flipkart, the Bengaluru headquartered company’s decision to re-entry the hyperlocal space surely looks like a part of its aggressive strategy to take on Jiomart. This decision has come close on the heels of Flipkart acquiring 100% stake in Walmart’s wholesale business. It is pretty clear that in the post-Jiomart scenario Flipkart is now trying to build a complete e-commerce ecosystem and will strive to be present in every important channel of this ecosystem. Be it B2b wholesale, B2c ecommerce and now hyperlocal.