After Taking Control Of Telecom Market, Mukesh Ambani Eyes On 'E-Commerce'

| February 7 , 2019 , 18:39 IST

Textiles-to-telecom giant Reliance Industries chairman and managing director Mukesh Ambani on Thursday made a huge announcement  at the Bengal Global Business Summit, he said, "Reliance Retail to launch a “new commerce” platform to empower over 3 crore small retailers in India."

The platform, “will bring win-win benefits to consumers, retailers and producers,” Ambani added.

Ambani, last month during an event in Gujarat had announced that “Jio and Reliance Retail will launch a unique new commerce platform to empower and enrich our 12 lakh small retailers and shopkeepers in Gujarat.”

Reliance currently has near 300 million customers using its Jio service along with 10,000 outlets of its retail arm in over 6,500 cities in India.

With Ambani’s new online venture, Indian e-commerce market led by foreign players including Amazon and Walmart-owned Flipkart is expected to see a dominant third player, according to market experts.

Speaking to media Arvind Singhal, chairman and managing director at retail consultancy firm Technopak said, “Reliance has an ecosystem of entertainment, financial services, payment gateway, etc. Once it has customers hooked on to these services, then it is a question of time before it can start offering merchandise as well."

Moreover, unlike Amazon or Walmart, homegrown Reliance doesn’t have constraints around restrictions on FDI in e-commerce. This might give it a regulatory edge over existing e-commerce biggies.

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“Retail sector operates between 3-5% of profit and Reliance has been able to maintain that profit. Nobody would have thought that they would pull off something like Jio,” said Naresh T Raisinghani, CEO and Executive Director at India division of global consulting firm BMGI.