Flipkart does away with grocery delivery app Nearby
- India’s largest e-commerce firm Flipkart Ltd will shut its groceries delivery app, Nearby, less than five months after the company started testing it, two people familiar with the matter said, reported LiveMint.
- The Nearby app was launched as an experiment by Flipkart in Bengaluru in October. The company promised to deliver fruits, vegetables, soaps and other staples from supermarkets to customers within an hour of receiving an order. However, because it was a pilot, Flipkart didn’t market or promote Nearby extensively. Eventually, because of a combination of poor customer demand and a lack of margins, the company will shut the app this month, the two people cited above said on condition of anonymity, the report says.
- A Flipkart spokesman confirmed the company shut its app, without elaborating.
- Flipkart’s move to shut Nearby comes as newly appointed chief executive Binny Bansal is cutting costs and sharpening the company’s focus on its key strengths: electronics and fashion sales and logistics. The e-commerce market leader is also striving to quickly launch an online payments service, an area where it has struggled and currently lags rivals such as Snapdeal and Paytm.
- In the face of increasing competition from Amazon India particularly, Flipkart is now doing away with potential distractions such as its hyperlocal offerings, especially as investors have turned cautious on Indian start-ups over the past few months. While Indian companies are pulling away from groceries delivery, Amazon India is aggressively pushing into the business. Earlier this month, the online retailer launched Amazon Now in Bengaluru, promising to deliver groceries and staples in less than two hours of receiving orders.