After Amazon Prime, Amazon India started its pilot project of its global variant, Amazon Pantry, in India. Through this service Amazon India users can now avail next day delivery of grocery and household products only in select areas of Hyderabad, according to media reports. With this model they are looking to compete with modern retail chains like Big Bazaar and Spencer’s. This development comes at a time when the FMCG business has emerged one of the largest categories by sales at Amazon India. In terms of units sold it has grown 215 per cent for Amazon India in the first half of the calendar year. Grocery sales grew by 412 per cent year-on-year.
It has been reported that Amazon has also modified the format for India which is quite popular in the US, UK, Germany and Japan. In India anyone can make use of Amazon Pantry while in the global format, it is accessible only to Amazon Prime subscribers where it’s known as Amazon Prime Pantry. Also, Indian users enjoy the privilege of next day delivery, whereas it takes 2-4 days in overseas markets.
However, with Amazon Prime being launched last week there is a possibility of membership being a requirement when the feature is introduced to newer cities. Amazon has also come up with two other formats for India — ‘Super Value Day’ and ‘Subscribe and Save’. Super Value Day allows customers to get back cash on their FMCG purchases on the first and second day of the month. Whereas Subscribe and Save enables buyers to subscribe to a product for regular purchase and get additional discount.
It needs to be noted that last March the e-commerce giant introduced a local grocery service called KiranaNow in Bangalore where it partnered with local kirana stores to deliver grocery in only 2-4 hours. Amazon extended this service to an app called Amazon Now launched this February. For Amazon Pantry, it has tied up with bigger stores to deliver a wider variety of goods.
Future Group who owns Big Bazaar was unavailable to comment on Amazon’s latest move. But the company has also upped its game with its experiments including a tie-up with Pune based Bajaj Finance- non-banking arm of Bajaj Finserv to provide easy EMI to customers on groceries to household essentials of up to Rs 3 lakh. This facility will be available across all the stores of Big Bazaar, FBB, Central, Home Town and Ezone.