Bengaluru-based e-commerce giant Flipkart said it is rolling out a hyperlocal 90-minute delivery service called Flipkart Quick for categories such as grocery, home accessories, mobile phones, and stationery, among other things.
Although the company hasn’t specified a launch date yet, Flipkart Quick is set to debut in Bengaluru starting with select locations.
With Flipkart Quick, the e-tailer has gone beyond other quick delivery services that mainly offer groceries. For instance, Amazon and Swiggy, both deliver grocery and essential products in two hours. Google-backed concierge service also provides quick delivery of groceries, essentials, and meat, among other things.
In December 2019, Flipkart began building its delivery and supply-chain muscle for its e-grocery business. It invested USD 60 million in logistics firm Shadowfax and an undisclosed amount in fresh produce supply chain startup Ninjakart. Its parent company Walmart also participated in the round.
To make its hyperlocal delivery a success, Flipkart would use services of Shadowfax and Ninjacart. While it will tap the last-mile capabilities of Shadowfax to make hyper-local deliveries, it plans to leverage its partnership with Ninjakart, to offer fresh fruits, vegetables, meat and milk.
Over time, Flipkart plans to build a hybrid model with Shadowfax by leveraging latter’s partnership with neighborhood stores and its own logistics arm Ekart to fulfill orders, according to local media Economic Times (ET).
During the eight-week long lockdown beginning March-end, Flipkart scrambled to grab the soon-to-be USD 10.5 billion e-grocery market. Although it didn’t have the supply chain in place to meet the demand, industry analysts said. Meanwhile, the e-grocery market became hyper-competitive as Reliance’s JioMart jumped into the fray, forcing existing players to ramp up their capabilities.
“Halfway through the year of the pandemic, supply chains have transformed drastically,” Flipkart said in a statement. “The hyperlocal category, known for being a convenience for many, has now emerged to be a long-term essential service for the country.”
The move comes at a time when Flipkart has refilled its war chest to grab a larger pie of the online retail industry in the country, which is recovering from COVID-19 induced slump. Earlier this month, the firm received a USD 1.2 billion check from its parent, Walmart.