Flipkart, India’s largest e-commerce firm, will now sell products to customers in over 190 countries through a new programme that is launching through its eBay India subsidiary.
The new programme, called Flipkart Global, will allow the over 100,000 sellers on Flipkart’s platform to sell their products online in over 190 countries. The initiative will leverage the export capabilities of eBay India, which was bought over by Flipkart as part of a $1.4 billion funding round in April.
“This programme will enable sellers to export their products globally and this would mean access to sellers in pretty much all the countries in the world. This will allow not just Indian customers in other parts of the world to access these products, but also will target a lot of global customers,” Anil Goteti, head of the eBay India business at Flipkart, said in an interview.
Goteti added that Flipkart will soon launch a programme that will bring products from other parts of the world to Indian customers through its eBay arm—similar to what Amazon India does with its Global Store programme for Indian shoppers. In October last year, Amazon India launched the Global Store for Indian shoppers, offering fashion brands, books and other products from its US online store that aren’t available in India.
As part of the Flipkart Global programme, Flipkart will list products of Indian sellers on over 35 global eBay platforms and assist them with shipping solutions, remittances and market trends.
“The programme will enable sellers from India access to over 171 million active customers of eBay globally in over 190 international markets. Some of these markets include the United States, UK, Germany, Canada and Australia,” Goteti said.
This new programme will help Flipkart boost its popularity with the few millions of non-resident Indian online shoppers globally who typically like to have access to and order Indian products. More importantly, it also opens up a promising new revenue stream for Flipkart, which currently is locked in a market-share battle with arch-rival Amazon India.
About 25,000 sellers on the eBay India platform will join the initiative, the company said. Flipkart plans to undertake a nationwide outreach to educate and on-board more sellers to export their products to international markets.
“India has immense export potential and there are many SMEs (small and medium-scale enterprises) who have unique products but don’t know how to make them available to global buyers. With the launch of Flipkart Global, we’re removing traditional growth barriers and giving them a platform to reach out internationally and expand sales,” said Goteti.
The move follows a similar push by Alibaba-backed Paytm—that is scaling its e-commerce operations under the new brand Paytm Mall—to open shipments to China. US-based Amazon already allows this through its global selling programme in India, launched in 2015.
The launch of Flipkart Global comes at a time when India’s leading online retailer is gearing up for its crucial Diwali season sale event, the Big Billion Day, and battle Amazon India, in what is expected to be the biggest showdown in Indian e-commerce.