Flipkart, India’s homegrown e-commerce marketplace, today celebrates the first anniversary of its Flipkart Samarth program. The program was launched with the objective of building a sustainable and inclusive platform for under-served, domestic communities and businesses to empower them with greater opportunities and better livelihood. Flipkart Samarth gives these businesses access to its growing pan-India customer base of more than 200 million, thereby making commerce truly democratic in the country through locally developed technology.
At the completion of one year, Flipkart has further strengthened its offerings through the Flipkart Samarth program and is introducing a host of new benefits for its seller partners. These benefits include a commission waiver of 0% for the first 6 months for any Flipkart Samarth seller on-boarded to the platform. Post 6 months, these sellers will be charged a standard 5% commission, at par with the industry standards, giving them greater scope to grow their business online as they face social and economic challenges. Further, Flipkart Samarth Sellers will be granted free cataloguing support for limited no. of products, advertising credits for the first month to help them garner prominent visibility on the platform, registration and listing training to hand-hold them as they familiarize with e-commerce and constant seller support along with a dedicated space in Flipkart’s fulfilment centers.
These benefits are aimed at easing the onboarding and selling journey of these under-served communities and will enable them in transforming their digital footprint. Today, Flipkart Samarth is able to support the livelihood of over 6,00,000 artisans, weavers and craftsmen across India and is working towards bringing more such sellers to the platform.
Addressing a virtual conference hosted by Flipkart today, Shri Pratap Chandra Sarangi, Minister of State, MSME, Government of India, said, “MSMEs are the most vibrant and dynamic contributors to our economy. It significantly contributes to the growth of the country and has a huge potential to do more. As witnessed in several industries, private and the public entities are coming together for advancements and this would go a long way in the e-commerce space too. One of the key benefits would be that it can help Indian MSMEs and the handicraft sector adopt a global outlook. It is about time for India’s rich cultural heritage to make it a global hub for handicrafts and goods and collaborating with e-commerce companies is a win-win situation for both.”
Over the course of the year, Flipkart has partnered with several Government bodies across India and made concerted efforts to bring local artisans, weavers and craftsmen into the e-commerce fold to leverage the platform’s benefits. These include partnerships with the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, UP Khadi Village and Industries Board and Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana National Urban Livelihoods Mission (DAY-NULM) to set-up Flipkart Samarth in 22 states of India, among others.
Dr. Navneet Sehgal, Additional Chief Secretary, MSME, Export Promotion, Khadi & Village Industries, Government of UP, said, “The Atmanirbhar Bharat is a call to action to rapidly ramp up competitiveness and propelling economic growth. To take ‘Make in India’ to a higher level, partnerships will play a vital role in amplifying the multi-sectoral role that MSMEs can play. Flipkart’s partnership with the U.P. Khadi Board under the Samarth program, has driven significant business impact for sellers from Uttar Pradesh in the Khadi and handloom sector. It is especially heartening to see a businessman from Lucknow become a top seller of the Flipkart Samarth program and playing a leading role in driving the program ahead. Programs such as Flipkart Samarth are true enablers of creating an inclusive ecosystem for businesses of all sizes to flourish while also holding equal ground for local handicrafts and handlooms.”
Mr. Rajneesh Kumar, Chief Corporate Affairs Officer, Flipkart Group, said, “As a homegrown company we aim to democratize commerce in the country for big and small businesses, and sellers across the country using innovation & locally developed cutting edge technology. Flipkart Samarth underlines the inclusive nature of the ecosystem we have created that benefits everyone, especially the under-served sections of the society. The program is in line with our vision of solving complex challenges that our country faces on both the business and the consumer front side, by using technology. We will continue our efforts towards breaking the social and demographic barriers for these communities and bring them into the fold of the formal economy. The year gone by has given us greater confidence and sharper direction for our future endeavours and we will continue to expand our reach and support to these small businesses, rural entrepreneurs, Indian handicrafts etc. in line with Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi’s AtmaNirbhar vision, while creating new livelihood opportunities.”
Jagjeet Harode, Senior Director and Head of Marketplace, Flipkart, further adds, “The one year journey with Flipkart Samarth has brought forward the potential that e-commerce has in bringing to light the local and often sparse handicraft and handloom sector of our country. With the help of Government partnerships, we have been able to bring artisans online from the remotest parts of Odisha, Andhra Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Gujarat, Punjab and Karnataka till now. We are very encouraged by the progress we have made and our aim is to bring further thrust to this initiative. We will be reaching out and bringing in many more institutions and individuals, so that we can impact more livelihoods.“
Flipkart, through the Samarth initiative, has been working closely with NGOs, Government bodies and livelihood missions to reach a large number of rural entrepreneurs, with a special focus on women-led enterprises, differently-abled entrepreneurs, artisans and weavers. These communities often face obstacles such as lack of access to working capital, poor infrastructure and inadequate training. Flipkart Samarth has been able to assess their pain points and aspirations and has been helping them address their problems.
Flipkart also supports MSMEs through Walmart Vriddhi, a supplier development program that aims to empower 50,000 MSMEs to ‘Make in India’ for local and global markets. It leverages the supply chains and expertise of the Flipkart businesses & Walmart and provides tailored training and advice along with access to an ecosystem of peers and mentors.