Amazon Kirana Now, An Online Marketplace For Neighbourhood Kirana Stores
Amazon will soon be launching a new service that it calls an India-specific innovation built particularly for the local market, which is a by-India, for-India service. Called Kirana Now, this service will allow next-door mom and pop shops to become sellers on Amazon platform.
Amazon’s India Country head told exclusively to ToI, “We want to provide maximum convenience to customers when shopping for their everyday needs and enable them to shop from the ecosystem of their local stores on their mobile phones and get things delivered when they really need it,”.
Amazon’s Kirana Now service will taken on likes of BigBasket and LocalBanya who are currently experiencing rapid growth in India.
According to Randstad India, India is currently sixth largest grocery market in the world pegged at $360 billion (Rs. 21,60,000 Crore), however, modern retail accounts for only 20 percent of this market. While the other 80 percent is ruled by unorganized mom-and-pop shops. On the other hand, online grocery market is in its infancy right now in India, and is expected to reach only about 2 percent by 2020 creating a potential market size of around $10 billion (Rs 60,000 crore).
Amazon understands that there is a huge opportunity in this vertical and wants to tap into this huge potential that Indian market is currently offering – and hence launch of Kirana Now.
Kirana Now will initially be piloted in city of Bengaluru and then wants to scale the service nationally. This service will only be available through their mobile app and orders placed on Kirana Now will be delivered within 2-4 hours.
Kirana Now is a Hyperlocal delivery service – which means, a customer will be able to place order from Kirana stores which are in close vicinity to them. Amazon will partner with Kirana stores and put them on the platform as sellers.
The service can be quite appealing to customers of Kirana Now as well, because the delivery of orders will take place in couple of hours rather than a day or two which sites like BigBasket and LocalBanya takes. Also, given that the orders are placed from nearby kirana stores, they are more comfortable doing it. Incase of any issues with their orders, customers can approach the kirana stores directly.
Amazon, in some way, want the Kirana stores to be extension of their network. Last year they had started using Kirana stores as their delivery and pick-up points too.
Prima-Facie, the service looks quite good, however, lot will depend on how these kirana stores price their products. Generally, Kirana stores have higher prices than large online retailers and if that is the case, customers may think twice even though they offer swift deliveries.
Kirana now is not the first service which is offering this kind of model, smaller players like Grofers also similar hyper local delivery service where they have tied up with local grocery stores.
If you are in Bengaluru, do try out this new service and let us know what you feel.