Two months after Flipkart acquired eBay’s India unit, the e-commerce company has shut down its global sourcing platform for sellers called Flipkart Global, reports Financial Express. The company plans to use eBay’s global sourcing platform instead. MediaNama has written to the company seeking more details and will update as soon as we get a response.
Flipkart Global was launched in January last year. The platform provides merchants with a worldwide pool of wholesale suppliers to buy from. It was started as an invitation based models for merchants, with Flipkart managing the delivery and customs clearance for the products being ordered.
Interestingly, rival Snapdeal had earlier sold a minority stake to eBay for an undisclosed amount in 2013. And in August 2015, eBay sold a partial stake in Snapdeal to focus on its India operations.
Other seller initiatives: Flipkart has an digital ad platform that allows sellers to advertise on its marketplace. It had also partnered with lending portals such as Lendingkart and Capital Float to give sellers access to loans between Rs 5 lakh and Rs 1 crore. It also has an ‘spotlist’ initiative through which it trains sellers for better cataloging.
Businesses shut down by Flipkart
– In February 2017, it suspended its consumer-facing courier service Ekart Courier nine months after launching it.
– Flipkart Money was phased out in October 2016 and all cashbacks and refunds from Flipkart Money will now flow into PhonePe’s wallet.
– In December 2015, it exited its e-books business saying that the division was not a strategic fit for the company. It added that the ebooks purchased on the platform would be serviced by Canada’s Rakuten Kobo.
Competition from Amazon: On the other hand, rival Amazon has a global selling programme, which allows merchants from India to sell products globally. It also recently announced that it has started giving damage allowance to certain sellers. It has doubled the capacity of its fulfillment centers as well.
Tencent, Microsoft funding: In April this year, Flipkart raised $1.4 billion from Chinese investment holdings firm Tencent, global e-commerce player eBay and technology company Microsoft. At the time, Flipkart Group was valued at $11.6 billion, down significantly from the previous valuation of $15 billion. Flipkart has raised a total of $4.65 billion in over 13 rounds of funding. In its previous round in September 2015, it had raised $700 million from a clutch of investors which include Steadview Capital.