eBay invested in Snapdeal due to its complementary business model & strong brand: Deepa Thomas, eBay India

deepa_thomaseBay, one of the earlier evangelizers of online shopping in India, has been developing eCommerce ecosystem in the country over the past 8 years. Through its Global EasyBuy, eBay brought the wide selection of products on eBay.in to the Indian buyers via an end to end managed process. Currently, on an average, eBay sells over 20,000 products every day, with safeguards like eBay Guarantee, which offers 100% satisfaction else a refund or a replacement within 20 days. To understand more about eBay’s growth in India, YourStory interacted with Deepa Thomas, eCommerce evangelist, eBay India, over email and phone. Thomas spoke on various developments including eBay’s investment in Snapdeal, entry of Amazon in India and recently launched eBay Daily. Edited excerpts:

How has been the growth in terms of daily orders and average ticket size per purchase at eBay in 2013?

eBay India is the country’s leading online marketplace with over 5 million users coming in from 4,306 cities in India. On an average, eBay India ships over 20,000 orders everyday. Presently, eBay India sells a mobile handset and a piece of apparel every 2 minutes. As far as heavy appliances are concerned it sells around 1,500 MP3 and over 1,400 television sets every month. The average ticketsize varies from category to category, however we have healthy ticketsize with repeat purchases.

Recently Amazon entered Indian market and other ecommerce majors like Flipkart and Snapdeal pivoted to marketplace model? In which ways Amazon and others impacting eBay’s business?

eBay has been in India for over 8 years now and we have a good understanding of the Indian market. We have been at the forefront of pioneering commerce in India and continue to scale our business at a very rapid growth rate. We have established strong brand equity, large and loyal user base with strong global technology platform, and are bullish about further strengthening our position on the market.

We believe ecommerce in India is still in nascent stage and market is wide enough to accommodate more players. Anyways, we don’t feel heat from anyone. Above all, we would not like to comment on any specific competitor as we believe in playing to our strengths.

This year, eBay invested in Snapdeal. Can you give some details on this including which reasons led eBay to invest in Snapdeal?

eBay India has always focused on expanding the eCommerce sector in India and our partnership with Snapdeal is another step in that direction. We chose to partner with Snapdeal due to their complementary business model, good management team, and strong brand. The partnership seeks to drive more consumer demand for eBay and Snapdeal merchants, along with wider selection for Indian consumers in a rapidly growing market.

In June, eBay entered into international packaged food section – eBay Daily. How is it faring?

eBay Daily has been gaining significant traction with a product being sold every 12 minutes. It offers customers access to over 1,600 products across 12 categories including biscuits, beverages, breakfast, snacks and nuts, canned and bottled foods, sauces, dessert, and so forth, across major international brands.

Take us through eBay’s future plan.

Since our inception, eBay India has had a defining role in shaping Indian eCommerce and we will continue to lead in future too by leveraging innovation and technology. We will evangelise benefits of eCommerce to the government, brands, entrepreneurs and consumers with strong focus on increasing eCommerce penetration and trust within consumers in tier ll and lll cities (real Bharat).

eBay believes in the potential of mobile commerce, and has launched a suite of solutions for the various mobile devices. The aim is to get customers to reach for their phone before they reach for their wallet to ensure they have checked online for the best selection and deals.