Reliance Retail, part of Reliance Industries, has launched its online grocery delivery portal JioMart, which will leverage the power of its stores and kiranas to deliver goods to consumers.
For Reliance, being a home player, getting in the grocery delivery area will be easy as it will have no problems with FDI rules.
Amazon, on the other hand, has to watch out for changing FDI rules as the central government can turn around and change its stance in order to protect the interests of the small retailers, aka kiranas, across the country.
In its pilot stage, JioMart is only going to available in Thane, Kalyan, and Navi Mumbai, and has a portfolio of more than 50,000 grocery products.
Mukesh Ambani, Chairman and Managing Director of Reliance Industries, called this venture “new commerce”. With JioMart, Reliance wants to connect with 30 million offline retailers and reach at least 200 million people. This was announced at the Reliance Industries' 42nd annual general meeting (AGM) in 2019.
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Reliance Retail has started taking pre-registrations for JioMart, which will offer free home delivery to its customers irrespective of the value of their cart, no-questions-asked returns, and express delivery.
The company website refers to JioMart as "Desh Ki Nayi Dukaan" (India's new store). It sent pre-registration invites to Jio customers, say media reports, to kick start the business.
“Our beta trials with thousands of merchants across multiple locations in the country established the premise of New Commerce with significant increase in sales and improvement in margins for the participating merchants. We are now getting ready to roll out the platform at a larger scale,” Ambani said while addressing the 42nd AGM earlier this year.
The JioMart website claims that the company is looking to launch Android and iOS apps in future to allow users to place orders directly from their phones.
(Edited by Saheli Sen Gupta)