Flipkart, India's leading e-commerce platform, has unveiled the introduction of 'Flipkart Boost,' an integrated initiative designed to help new era digital-first consumer companies to expand their growth to the next level. Flipkart Boost would develop Made in India brands with end-to-end support, including planning, advertising, cataloguing, logistics, quality control, and mentorship, under a service fee approach.
According to the announcement made on 7th September 2021, the program will shortlist brands based on a clear set of pre-decided objective criteria, which covers their growth potential, sustainable revenue run rate, focus on quality, commitment to building a long-lasting brand, strong product mix and customer orientation. Through a 'pitch day' facilitated by Flipkart, the selected brands will also have the opportunity to secure potential funding from a network of leading venture capital funds and active investors in the D2C space, including A91 Partners, DSG Consumer Partners, Fireside Ventures, Matrix Partners India, Sequoia Capital India and Stellaris Venture Partners.
The program was successfully piloted with several brands earlier this year, seeing significant growth in quarterly revenue since inclusion in the program. These brands cover a diverse range of segments, including F&B, baby care, lifestyle, beauty and home improvement.
Eligible companies will be allowed to use Flipkart's expertise throughout functions by leveraging value-driven business insights, increasing digital exposure, and expanding into new regions with the appropriate technologies to improve their footprint and generate quantifiable effects across shoppers. The Flipkart Boost initiative will provide these businesses with possibilities for development by providing insights into their effectiveness and market momentum.
Ravi Iyer, Senior Vice President and Head, Corporate Development, Flipkart, said, "As India's homegrown e-commerce marketplace, our primary goal is to expand our offerings in line with evolving customer preferences; while ensuring empowerment of Indian MSMEs and partnering in the 'Make in India' mission. The onset of the pandemic and the resulting rise of direct-to-consumer brands have boosted the MSME sector in India. The growing popularity of digital-first brands driven by a focus on specific customer needs demonstrates immense market potential. With the Flipkart Boost Programme, we aim to build and nurture these growing customer-focused businesses by providing them relevant mentoring that covers access to a network of investors, market intelligence, scalability programmes, and marketing engagements."
The Flipkart Boost Program underlines Flipkart's ultimate goal of providing avenues for development to emerging D2C businesses by providing a framework to enable the uptrend in their business through a valuable and insight-led collaboration. Brands can apply directly on the Flipkart seller platform based on specified criteria, and 100 brands will be picked for the initiative this year, according to the announcement.
According to the report by Avendus Capital in October 2020 "over the past 18 months, over 800 D2C brands have leveraged the power of digital to build their presence and cater to evolving customer preferences. The pandemic has accelerated the uptake for D2C brands, with an almost 88% rise in demand over 2019. The D2C sector in India is currently worth $44.6 billion (end of FY 2021) and is expected to be worth $100 billion by 2025."
Flipkart has also recently expanded its hyperlocal service Flipkart Quick to three new metros - Kolkata, Chennai, and Mumbai - to provide consumers safe and seamless access to order daily essentials through quick doorstep delivery. Flipkart Quick will be available across ten cities, including Bengaluru, Delhi, Gurgaon, Ghaziabad, Hyderabad, Noida, and Pune. The expansion has been made by the e-commerce giant on 9th September 2021.
Flipkart Quick allows customers to purchase online and have it delivered within 90 minutes, or they can arrange a two-hour time slot at their leisure. Customers receive free delivery on their first order and any future orders that exceed Rs 199. Customers will also be able to place purchases at any time of day and have them shipped between the hours of 6 a.m. and midnight.
Flipkart intends to roll out this hyperlocal service in other cities in phases this year, with the goal of having a presence in over 200 cities by the end of 2022.
Sandeep Karwa, Vice-President - Flipkart Quick, Flipkart, said, "As a homegrown company, we understand the pain points of Indian consumers and are working towards solving not just faster deliveries but also to enable them with access to great quality products at the most affordable prices. We have made strategic investments and partnerships to expand the value of Flipkart Quick in multiple micro-markets across the country. With a successful stint of our hyperlocal service last year, we are now ready to introduce Flipkart Quick in 10 cities ahead of the festive season, for consumers to not just avail fresh fruits and vegetables, snacks, and beverages but also household essentials and baby care products - all under 90 mins."
Flipkart further revealed that "by the end of September 2021, Flipkart Quick will also service consumers in Ahmedabad, Chandigarh, Mohali and Panchkula, taking the total city count to 14 cities. Flipkart Quick was launched in Bengaluru in 2020 to widen the accessibility of products and enable quick delivery for consumers who order products from Flipkart hubs in their location. The hyperlocal delivery service offers an assortment of more than 2,500 products in categories such as fresh fruits and vegetables, dairy, grocery, mobiles, electronics, and baby care. "