The festive season in India is still about 2-3 months away and it looks like Amazon has already started preparing for it. The company has launched six new fulfilment centres to support more sellers and meet high demands during the highly busy season for e-commerce.
The company has launched new centres in five cities namely Jaipur, Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, and Coimbatore. Through these centres, it aims to offer its fulfilled by Amazon Service to more small and medium businesses.
Commenting on the launch, Akhil Saxena, vice-president, India customer fulfilment at Amazon India, said ,
We remain committed to investing in our fulfilment and logistics capability to enable and empower sellers to serve customers nationally at lower costs. It stands testament to our larger commitment of making deep investments in the country and in turn creating opportunities for employment, growth and revenue generation for the government.
These centres will also enable faster delivery and easier returns of items. With these 6 new centres, Amazon now has 27 fulfilment centres in India. These centres are located in states like Gujarat, Haryana, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Delhi, Punjab, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Telangana and West Bengal. They together span across an area close to 2.5 million square.
Amazon fulfilment centres are large warehouses where sellers can send their products. It packs these products and dispatches them to customers under its Fulfilled by Amazon (FFA) service.
The company claims that over 80% of sellers on its platform use this service to sell their products. There are over 1.3 million products available on Amazon for immediate shipping through this extensive network of fulfilment centres.
Amazon vs. others in India
The latest investment in new fulfilment centres does show that Amazon is indeed betting big on the Indian e-commerce. It has already committed an investment of over $5 billion in the country. Earlier this year, Jeff Bezos had announced to pump in additional $3 billion in company’s India operations.
Moreover, one could say that the time is especially ripe and iron is hot for Amazon to strike. This is because Flipkart could be on the back seat without any fresh funding for almost a year now.
Although top executives at Flipkart have repeatedly denied looking for fresh funds, the constant valuation markdowns by investors and internal troubles are not making things easier for it at the moment.
On the other hand, riding high on superior customer service and satisfaction and of course huge investments, it has slowly grown in popularity since its launch. And that is despite the fact that it was a late entrant in India.
According to the latest study by RedSeer Consulting, Amazon has already replaced Snapdeal to occupy the second spot behind Flipkart in terms of GMV share. It has also managed to significantly narrow the gap between Flipkart and itself.
During the first quarter of the year, Amazon recorded a GMV share in mid-twenties from 17-19% last year. At the same time, Flipkart largely remained stagnant at a share of about 35-37 per cent during the quarter.