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Flipkart CEO Kalyan Krishnamurthy meets FM Nirmala Sitharaman

Flipkart CEO Kalyan Krishnamurthy and Chief Corporate Affairs Officer Rajneesh Kumar met with Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, but the e-commerce giant did not release any insights about the meeting. A photo of FM Sitharaman and CEO Krishnamurthy having conservation was also tweeted by the Finance Minister’s office.

The Flipkart CEO briefed Sitharaman regarding the company’s relationships with sellers, notably SMEs. He also acknowledged Flipkart’s focus on supporting artisans as well as weavers in adopting digital platforms to reach a bigger audience to buy their products, as reported by news agency PTI.

Flipkart on its platform has around 3 lakh registered sellers from all across India, with 60% originating from tier II and tier III cities. Both through wholesale business and last-mile delivery service, Flipkart also works with over 1.6 million kiranas across India.

The Walmart-owned e-commerce company, which has more than 350 million registered customers from all across the nation, has been investing in important categories such as fashion, travel, and groceries. Flipkart has announced the introduction of Shopsy, a social commerce platform that will empower local entrepreneurship.

In January-June 2021, Flipkart Wholesale had a 17 percent exponential rise in its Kirana customer base in comparison with the same time the previous year, and this is expected to increase by 33 percent in July-December 2021 (from the year-ago period). Flipkart confirmed the acquisition of Walmart India for an unknown sum in July of last year and introduced Flipkart Wholesale to tap into India’s $650 billion B2B retail industry.

E-commerce adoption has accelerated beyond metros, deep into smaller cities and towns, thanks to the growing smartphone market, with reliable connectivity and social distancing compulsions due to the Covid 19 outbreak and lockdowns. To keep up with the increase in order volume, e-commerce platforms are scaling up capacity and hiring aggressively.

Flipkart, Myntra, Ekart (logistics and supply chain arm), Flipkart Wholesale, and Cleartrip are all part of the Flipkart Group, which was founded in 2007. The Group also owns a majority stake in PhonePe, the digital payments company. Walmart Inc spent USD 16 billion in Flipkart in 2018, acquiring 77 percent ownership, and led a $1.2 billion investment round in the e-commerce company earlier this year.

Flipkart raised roughly $3.6 billion (about Rs 26,842 crore) in funding last month for a valuation of $37.6 billion, with the parent company – Walmart, SoftBank, Singapore’s GIC Pte, and several other sovereign wealth and pension funds participating in the round. Flipkart is rumored to be working on its initial public offering (IPO), however, the company has not provided a particular date. Walmart announced earlier this week that its worldwide business surged by 13% in the second quarter ending July 31, thanks to operations in countries like India and Mexico.

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