scorecardVocal for local: Online commerce unicorn Meesho joins ONDC to aid local sellers
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Vocal for local: Online commerce unicorn Meesho joins ONDC to aid local sellers

Vocal for local: Online commerce unicorn Meesho joins ONDC to aid local sellers
Business2 min read
  • Meesho has more than 8 lakh registered sellers, with 40% of them from Tier II cities and beyond.
  • Meesho’s integration with ONDC is expected to create a wider market for hyperlocal suppliers.
  • Tier II cities contributed 54% of the gross merchandise value of festive season sales this year.
Meesho, an e-commerce unicorn in India that primarily caters to Tier II cities has joined the government’s Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC) initiative. This will help buyers connect with hyperlocal sellers in creating an inclusive e-commerce ecosystem in the country.

To create a more level playing field for small and medium enterprises in India, the Ministry of Commerce and Industry launched the ONDC portal last year. The pilot was available to sellers in five cities - Delhi, Bengaluru, Coimbatore, Bhopal and Shillong, according to PTI reports.

ONDC is an open network portal that helps micro enterprises gain more visibility in comparison to e-commerce behemoths like Amazon and Flipkart. E-commerce startup Meesho’s integration with ONDC is expected to fuel discoverability of products for consumers while creating a wider market for hyperlocal suppliers.

“With a shared goal to empower small sellers and give a fillip to hyperlocal businesses, the integration will boost our efforts to democratise internet commerce for everyone. ONDC will also play an important role in expanding India’s e-commerce sector by bringing more consumers online. We have been working closely with ONDC to ensure that the integration is smooth and the user experience remains seamless,” said Vidit Aatrey, founder and CEO of Meesho.

The pilot phase of Meesho’s integration with ONDC will first be launched in Bangalore and gradually rolled out in other locations over the coming months.

Meesho’s adoption of ONDC is a reflection of the increasing demand in Tier II cities coupled with a spurt in the number of retailers from these cities. Festive period sales become a Tier II phenomenon with 64% shoppers coming from these cities, according to a Redseer report. The cities also contributed 54% of the gross merchandise value during the festive sales this year.

With the growing importance of social e-commerce, unicorn Meesho was the second-largest contributor in order volume during the first week of festive sales in September, with a majority of its sales coming from Tier II and Tier III cities.

Meesho says that 80% of its 14 crore annual transacting customers are from Tier II cities. The company also has more than 8 lakh sellers currently registered on the platform, of which 40% are from Tier II cities and beyond.

“At ONDC, our aim is to create an open e-commerce ecosystem that caters to one and all. We are pleased to onboard Meesho as its deep capabilities in small towns will set the network flywheel in motion and take ONDC closer to our goals. E-commerce is still small in India and new-age platforms like Meesho will be strong network participants for ONDC in this journey,” said T Koshy, chief executive officer, ONDC.

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