Microsoft joined ONDC to empower India’s booming e-commerce ecosystem
The Indian e-commerce industry is witnessing an upward growth trajectory. During the rising dependence on technology during the Covid-19 pandemic, the Indian e-commerce market grew by over US$50 billion. The young, tech-savvy generation of the country, with the growing use of the internet and smartphone, and relatively better knowledge about the economic conditions of the country are helping young entrepreneurs innovate new products and meet the growing demands of the industry by establishing their businesses over the digital and e-commerce domain. India’s next revolution for its e-commerce domain will now be undertaken by the Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC), a non-profit government wing of India that promotes an open network for the e-commerce industry. The latest reports suggest that the ONDC initiative undertaken by the Indian government is now supported by one of the top big tech companies in the world, Microsoft.
Based on reports, the Indian e-commerce market is expected to reach US$110 by the end of 2026. This exponential rise in retail and e-commerce businesses is fuelling the economic growth of the warehousing and logistics sector in the country. Furthermore, the Covid-19 pandemic has accelerated the growth of e-commerce dominance across the country. Currently, several companies are now looking to shift to the digital mode, leveraging the power of e-commerce. The dramatically rising popularity of digital marketplaces is making space for quality workspaces that are located in well-decorated areas and offer employees the convenience of traveling and availing other facilities. Reports say that with over 800 million users, India is currently the 2nd largest internet market.
Microsoft Empowering ONDC Initiatives
Microsoft became the first global big tech company to join the Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC). The company aims to introduce social e-commerce via its application in the Indian market later this year. ONDC is expected to open to the public in Bengaluru over the next fortnight as it enters into the next phase of the pilot training for enhanced refining before the network rolls out for general use. While applauding ONDC onboarding efforts, Microsoft indicated that the company plans to launch a shopping application for Indian customers, along with its social circle, leveraging the power of the open network to discover the best pricing among retailers and sellers.
This government-backed initiative is speculated to be rolled out in 36 cities across the country for its pilot phase implementation, besides, it already has onboarded nine platforms and is in an advanced stage of development of adding another 17. The program has also garnered interest from other platforms including telecom majors and banks. Platforms that have already integrated with ONDC include Paytm, Digit, Go Frugal, Seller App, Dunzo, and others.
After the integration of this program, sellers can offer price benefits to their customers and gain a competitive advantage. These benefit schemes will enable businesses to pass on some of the cost of maintaining a business to the customers. With access to more buyers, enhanced brand visibility, and a lower cost of doing business, ONDC is expected to be a major success.