In its second-largest acquisition, Amazon buys the company for $970 million.
The retailer also launches selling and fulfillment programs for Indian sellers.
Amazon.com Inc. opened an online marketplace in India this week. For now, it sells only physical books, movies and TV shows, but it will soon also offer mobile phones and cameras, followed by other product categories, Amazon says.
Simultaneously with the new site, which is housed at Amazon.in, the retailer launched in India Selling on Amazon, which provides independent sellers with unlimited virtual shelf space in the marketplace, and Fulfillment by Amazon, which is a pay-as-you-go fulfillment and customer support service. Two million sellers worldwide already use those programs, Amazon says.
The move is not the retailer’s first foray into Indian e-commerce.
Last year in February, Amazon opened an online shopping service for Indian consumers called Junglee.com. That service allows Indian merchants to advertise their products for free on the Junglee web site in order to drive traffic to their own physical and online stores. The retailer is targeting those same merchants with Selling on Amazon and Fulfillment by Amazon, it says.
“Our vision is to become a trusted and meaningful sales channel for retailers of all sizes across India, enabling them to succeed and efficiently grow their business online,” says Amit Agarwal, vice president and country manager for Amazon India. “With Fulfillment by Amazon, we will do the heavy lifting for the sellers so that they can focus on core business functions like sourcing and pricing their products.”