Asia’s richest man to take on retail giants Amazon and Walmart

This appeared in The Millennial Source

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Indian business tycoon Mukesh Ambani has launched a service that aims to compete with Amazon in the South Asian nation. Reliance Industries, an Indian multinational conglomerate company owned by Ambani, began inviting people to sign up for its grocery delivery service called JioMart on December 30.

JioMart will cater to online shoppers in three Indian cities, namely Navi Mumbai, Thane and Kalyan, with plans to scale it up gradually. The app will work on an online-to-offline (O2O) marketplace model, which means that it will source grocery items from nearby merchants, a similar model to Amazon’s delivery service, Prime Now, and India’s retail service, Grofers.

JioMart will offer customers free home delivery, with no minimum order value and a no-questions-asked return policy.

Protests against foreign business practices

“Amazon and Flipkart are a second version of the East India company. The motive of Amazon and Flipkart is not to do business, but to monopolize and control,” said Praveen Khandelwal, national secretary of the Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) at a protest against the retail giants on December 12. Khandelwal made a comparison between Amazon and the East India Company, which was a British trading house whose arrival in India kicked off nearly 200 years of colonial rule.

The merchants allege that the US giants are pricing them out of the market with deep discounting.

Flipkart is an Indian e-commerce company based in Bengaluru and owned by Walmart. Flipkart claims it has over 60% market share in the Indian e-commerce market, while Amazon is believed to have about 30% market share.

With the emergence of JioMart, the two US retail giants are expected to see fierce competition in the e-commerce industry in 2020.

Response from government

Originally published at on January 3, 2020.

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