Mutual Funds

Hurting small business

Arvind Jayaram | Updated on January 24, 2018

Himanshu Goenka,

Even as customers and entrepreneurs have markedly benefited from the e-commerce boom, the traditional brick-and-mortar stores, which are losing out to their online counterparts, are a worried lot.

“We have been in the electronics retail business since 2010, and we have seen a big change since e-commerce sites became popular. The number of footfalls at stores has reduced considerably in the last four years,” says Himanshu Goenka, whose family owns a chain of stores in Bangalore.

People who walk into the store often leave without making a purchase as the same product is available on a website for a price much lower than of the store, he bewails.

“All big e-commerce players have set up or tied up with companies to whom they give preferential treatment, in terms of commission rates and subsidies, allowing those companies to sell for ridiculously low prices, the losses for which are made up by the e-commerce sites,” he laments.

“In the same way that there is a maximum retail price, there should be a law that disallows e-commerce sites or other online sellers from selling below their cost price. This trend of maximising the customer base without any regard for the bottom line, because some venture capitalist is funding the operation, has to be curtailed,” he adds.

Published on March 15, 2015

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