Meesho is the latest to join the government’s Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC) to connect buyers and hyperlocal sellers. According to Meesho, the integration will increase the discoverability of products for consumers while also creating a larger market for hyperlocal suppliers.
The SoftBank-backed unicorn will pilot the service in Bengaluru before expanding it to other cities in the coming months. More than 80% of Meesho’s 14 million users and nearly 40% of its eight lakh sellers are from Tier 2+ cities. The ONDC integration will only broaden the company’s core product offering and allow sellers to reach a larger demographic.
“With a shared goal of empowering small sellers and giving a boost to hyperlocal businesses, the integration will boost our efforts to democratize internet commerce for everyone,” said Vidit Aatrey, Founder and CEO of Meesho.
“ONDC will also play a critical role in growing India’s e-commerce sector by bringing more consumers online.” “We’ve been collaborating closely with ONDC to ensure that the integration goes smoothly and that the user experience remains consistent,” he added.
Prior to Meesho, ONDC had partnered with e-commerce platforms such as Paytm Mall and CoutLoot to democratise online shopping. On the ONDC platform, logistics and delivery are handled by startups such as Dunzo, Loadshare, and Shiprocket.
In Meesho’s addition, T Koshy, CEO of ONDC, stated, “At ONDC, our goal is to create an open e-commerce ecosystem that caters to one and all.” We are delighted to welcome Meesho, whose deep capabilities in small towns will set the network flywheel in motion and bring ONDC closer to our objectives. E-commerce is still relatively new in India, and new-age platforms such as Meesho will be important network participants for ONDC in this journey.”
The government hopes to replicate the success of UPI with ONDC and end the Flipkart-Amazon duopoly in Indian e-commerce.