JioMart, a Reliance initiative introduced to operate along with small stores
Reliance Retail was founded in 2006 and since then has been the largest retailer in the Indian market by revenue. It serves more than 3.6 million consumers each week via its nearly 10,000 physical stores in more than 6,500 Indian cities and towns.
What is JioMart?
A part of Reliance Industries, Reliance Retail recently launched its own online grocery delivery platform called JioMart, which will empower the strength of its kiranas and stores to deliver goods to users. Right now, JioMart is only going to be made available in Kalyan, Navi Mumbai, and Thane with a portfolio of more than 50,000 grocery items. This is a platform where consumers can head over to buy necessities from nearby retailers. It does not sell groceries directly to the consumers but instead connects offline retailers with other online buyers.
Reliance Retail has successfully begun accepting pre-registrations for JioMart, which will provide free home delivery to its clients regardless of the value of their cart, express delivery and no-questions-asked returns for the benefit of the Indian consumers. The website of the company has titled JioMart as ‘Desh Ki Nayi Dukaan’ (India’s new store) and has recently sent pre-registration invites to Jio customers to kick start the initiative, as per numerous media reports. They have urged Jio users to sign up for JioMart so that they can easily access introductory offers.
Originally, JioMart is said to deal with products such as regular staples, shampoos, soaps and other household products.
JioMart app on its way
The JioMart website also claims that the company is soon planning to launch iOS and Android apps in the future to enable the users to place orders directly via their phones. This app will connect both neighborhood stores and customers, combining data and technology capabilities of Reliance’s telecom business Jio and the infrastructure of its retailing part.
Reliance Jio executives have ardently reached out to small shop owners in numerous parts of India to showcase their point-of-sale machines and incentivize them to join the initiative of JioMart, as mentioned by numerous merchants who have been approached.
JioMart aims at successfully partnering with local grocers and make them aware of features like integrated billing applications, Points of Sale (PoS) terminals, supply chain management, low-interest working capital, GST compliance and inventory management skills.
Since Reliance has always been a home player, acquiring a role in the grocery delivery field will be simple for them as they will definitely not face any issues with the FDI rules. But on the other hand, Amazon has to be careful about the changing FDI rules as the Central Government can turn around and change its position with the aim to protect the interests of small retailers, also called kiranas, across India. Basically, JioMart is going to be a great challenge upon which Amazon and Walmart-owned Flipkart, who spend billions to make a dent in India’s retail market and face regulatory challenges, have stumbled upon.
What does the leader say?
The venture is being called ‘new commerce’ by Mukesh Ambani, who is the Chairman and Managing Director of Reliance Industries. He also mentioned that with the help of JioMart, Reliance aims to connect with more than 30 million offline retailers and reach at least 200 million individuals. The news about the launch of the new initiative was announced at the Reliance Industries’ 42nd annual general meeting (AGM) in 2019.
Apart from this, Ambani also mentioned that Reliance’s beta trials with thousands of merchants across numerous locations in India established the premise of new commerce with the noteworthy rise in the sales and improvement in margins for the participating merchants. Reliance is now getting ready to roll out the initiative at a larger scale for all the potential users.
In addition to procurements specifically aimed at online retail operations, Reliance has been enhancing its presence in the field of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and the Internet of Things (IoT) to build newer experiences for e-commerce users.
Last year, Reliance had acquired a logistics services platform called Grab A Grub, essentially to strengthen its e-commerce venture in the Indian market. Reliance further reported its dealings with software business C-Square, which offers solutions to online e-commerce, sales force automation, retailers and distributors.