Companies

Amazon Business saw CAGR of 102% in customer base

Yatti Soni Bengaluru | Updated on September 18, 2021

Suchit Subhas, Director, Amazon Business

Suchit Subhas, Director, talks on Amazon Business’ growth, and preparation for the upcoming festival season

Amazon’s online wholesale market, Amazon Business, has witnessed a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 102 per cent in customer base, making its Indian marketplace the second biggest after the US. One of Amazon’s biggest competitors in India, Flipkart, also launched its B2B marketplace, Flipkart Wholesale, in 2020, and has recently announced plans to triple its India footprint by December. As Amazon Business completes four years of its launch in India, BusinessLine spoke to Suchit Subhas, Director, Amazon Business, about the vertical’s growth and preparation for the upcoming festival season. Excerpts:

Amazon Business is completing four years in India this month. In hindsight, what are some learnings and challenges from Amazon Business’ operations in India?

We started our journey with 14,000 sellers in 2017 and have seen that base grow to over 4 lakh sellers offering 15 crore plus GST enabled products. Through our feature ‘Request for Quantity Discount’, launched in February 2019, our sellers have catered to lakhs of bulk orders from businesses across the country. We recently launched a commercial store with products across categories such as business laptops, networking devices, industrial adhesives, tools and equipment, and safety and security, across top brands such as Lenovo, Cisco, Pidilite, Kimberly Clark, Stanley Black & Decker, and Kirloskar.

Also see: Flipkart strengthens last mile network for the upcoming festive season

We have continued to invest in India-focused innovation and have launched features that are relevant to our customers. We recently launched Business PAN as an additional license type through which MSMEs with annual turnover of less than ₹20 lakh, education institutes, and NGOs can register and avail Amazon Business benefits. To help businesses adjust to the new normal and run operations remotely, we launched ‘Bill to-Ship to’ feature. This feature allows businesses to claim GST credit on their billing address for pan-India shipments. Along with technological innovations, we have also innovated in our customer experience to help businesses save more.

How does the company plan to chart the vertical’s growth in the years ahead?

We are encouraged by the fact that we have been able to cater to businesses from Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities along with businesses from top cities. We will continue to remain customer-obsessed and are focussed on building the right customer experience right from day 1. Our focus will remain on increasing our selection, bringing in top brand launches, exciting business deals for bulk purchases, and new innovations for customers. We will continue to innovate on behalf of our customers and launch features through which they are able to further drive efficiencies in procurement processes and reduce costs.

The festival season is an important time for businesses in India. How does Amazon Business plan to support MSMEs during this time?

This festival season is an opportunity for our MSME customers to save big on business purchases and bring down costs as they plan to ramp up business for the remainder of the year. We have worked with our sellers to curate deals and offers on a range of GST enabled products from top brands across categories such as smartphones, laptops, printers, electronics, appliances, home and kitchen products.

Also see: Amazon, Microsoft swoop in on $24 b India farm-data trove

How has the company supported MSMEs resuming operations post-lockdown?

It has been our continued effort to empower businesses to navigate through such challenging times by helping them become more efficient and reduce their cost of procurement. To help businesses with incremental savings opportunities, we launched B2B focused events such as MSME Accelerate, an event that helps small businesses kick start their operations post lockdown.

In MSME Accelerate, we saw participation from over 3 lakh sellers, configuring exclusive business deals and bulk discounts resulting in a 30 percent increase in buying customers and 35 percent increase in orders. Additionally, our monthly business event, Business Value Days, continues to see significant growth in participation from customers and sellers. Each sale has seen over 5,000 curated offers resulting in crores of savings for businesses.

Published on September 17, 2021

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