Flipkart to expand e-grocery store to 5-6 cities by year-end

New Delhi: E-commerce major Flipkart plans to expand its online grocery service ‘Supermart’ to 5-6 major Indian cities by the end of the year as it takes head-on players like Alibaba-backed BigBasket and SoftBank-funded Grofers as well as rival Amazon India.

The company plans to expand the service, which currently covers all major pin codes in Bengaluru, in 5-6 major cities by the end of 2018, Flipkart said in a statement. The development comes a day after the Competition Commission stated that it has cleared US retail giant Walmart’s proposal to acquire 77% stake in Flipkart, a deal estimated to be worth $16 billion.

Second attempt in the segment

  • This is Flipkart’s second attempt at the segment. In October 2015, Flipkart had launched a separate groceries ordering app called Nearby for delivering fruits, vegetables and other staples from supermarkets.
  • Prime Now, an app-only service, is available to customers in Bengaluru, Mumbai, New Delhi and Hyderabad.
  • Flipkart Head of Groceries Manish Kumar said grocery shopping remains an ‘unsolved e-commerce market’, despite its importance to consumers and to the economy.
  • Interestingly, in May, Amazon had re-branded its groceries service to ‘Amazon Now’. It has been aggressively ramping up selection and focussing on speedier delivery to consolidate its position in the segment.

Flipkart said its groceries portfolio currently spans staples, FMCG and dairy products, and that the category can be accessed through its Android and iOS mobile apps, as well as its desktop and mobile websites.

(With inputs from PTI)