Amazon, the world’s largest online retailer, has launched an online marketplace in India, Amazon.in, where third-party sellers can list their products and sell directly to customers. India represents Amazon’s tenth marketplace where buyers can browse through a catalogue of 7 million local and imported books and 12,000 titles from movies and TV shows to begin with.
The company is planning to expand its product footprint to cameras, mobiles and other electronics devices.
“What it means to consumers in India is they get to choose from a vast selection at low prices through fast and reliable delivery,” said Greg Greeley, VP-international expansion in Amazon. Globally, it has over 2 million sellers and over 200 million customers across 9 marketplaces including Canada, Japan, China and the UK.
Amazon will not stock and sell its own products because India’s FDI regulations do not allow online multibrand retailers to sell their own products.
Amazon has signed up 100 vendors across the country so far and has set up a 1.5 lakh sqnft fulfilment centre in Mumbai to service online orders. Any of the lakhs of retailers in India can hope to sign up with Amazon and sell their products online.
Amazon debuted in the country launching a shopping catalogue aggregator Junglee.com, to tap into the country’s rapidly growing e-commerce market. India’s e-commerce or more specifically e-tailing market, crossed $800 million with 13 million online shoppers in 2012, said a recent Accel Partners study. The country’s internet penetration stands at about 8% with 137 million users, of which roughly 20 million are shoppers including the online travel agency market. This reflects China’s online market back in 2005. China now has 538 million internet users and 227 million online shoppers.
Recently, the country’s largest e-commerce player Flipkart unveiled an online marketplace where customers can choose their suppliers across a wide variety of product categories. Another e-commerce company Infibeam has launched its Build a Bazaar platform to enable retailers build their stores online and connect with prospective buyers.
Amazon’s marketplace allows third-party sellers to access its suite of services including Selling on Amazon and Fulfilment by Amazon (FBA). When sellers list the products on the website, they maintain their own inventory, fulfill orders and provide customer service. In the FBA model, third party sellers can access Amazon’s fulfilment resources and expertise, customer service and shipping options. “We provide barrier free access nationwide without any listing fee. Sellers can leverage on Amazon’s investment in technology and innovation. It also provides sellers pay as you use fulfilment service,” said Amit Agarwal, country manager for Amazon India, who has been with Amazon for the past 14 years.
Source : The Times Of India.