E-commerce firms gets ready with sail-through plans

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E-commerce companies in India have rushed to make announcements on new offerings or are strategising fast on their next move, in the wake of , the world’s largest e-commerce company, entering India on June 5.

Seattle-based Amazon’s US rival, the San Jose-headquartered , has made two back-to-back announcements in India. Earlier this week, it announced the launch of eBay Feed that allows users to customise the homepage according to their needs. Today, it rolled out eBay Daily, a platform for international food items  including beverages, canned and bottled foods, sauces, and dessert.

“Any move that exposes more Indians to the delights of shopping will ultimately benefit the industry as a whole, given this exciting growth period,” said Deepa Thomas, e-commerce evangelist, eBay India, on how eBay looks at the competition after Amazon’s entry.

Domestic e-commerce player announced its food or grocery entry yesterday. “After successfully launching apparels, home and kitchen items, mobile phones and many more categories, it’s time for HomeShop18 to satisfy your taste buds,” the company said.

Referring to Amazon’s launch, Narsimha Jaykumar, chief operating officer of Homeshop18, told Business Standard, “This competition will increase the credibility of e-commerce. With increased competition, there is a greater scope for expansion into the vast Indian market.”

.com, a leading online marketplace player, made a dramatic announcement soon after Amazon’s entry. Snapdeal has partnered Hero Electric to sell a new range of electric bikes on its site. “There is definitely room for more than one player and the advent of global giants has reinforced our belief into the potential of online retail” said Sandeep Komaravelly, vice-president, marketing, Snapdeal.

Flipkart, too, is gearing up to launch new wares. A company spokesperson declined to give out any trend just yet on how Amazon had impacted its sales. “While it is still early days, the category continues to perform very well and beyond expectations,” she said. The spokesperson pointed out, “Things have been going pretty well in the books category. We just completed sales of one lakh books a day about a week to 10 days back,” adding “quite a few plans are coming up in the category over the next couple of months.” Flipkart will focus on categories such as academic books, children’s books and eBooks.

On competition from Amazon, Mukesh Bansal, CEO & Co-Founder, Myntra, online leader in fashion and lifestyle segment, argued that the Indian ecommerce industry is still at its infancy and has a long way to go when compared to mature markets like China. “Experienced players like Amazon will compete (with Flipkart, Snapdeal etc) for leadership in the horizontal category and will help grow the overall market base of Indian ecommerce,” Bansal said.

Amazon declined to talk about the number of shoppers on its site or the early trends. “At this point of time, all I can say is, we are very encouraged by the response. We have just started and our focus is to deliver a vast selection, low prices and fast and reliable delivery to our customers,” said the Amazon spokesperson.

According to research by the internet & mobile association of india, the e-commerce market in India is projected to grow from approximately $1.2 billion in 2012 to $1.8 billion this year.

Source- Business Standard

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