JioMart Online Grocery Service Launches Reliance, Challenge Amazon, Flipkart

JioMart will deliver food to over 200 cities across the country

JioMart Online Grocery Service Launches Reliance, Challenge Amazon, Flipkart

Reliance Industries Ltd has launched an online grocery service, said JioMart, the head of its grocery retail business, in a move aimed at rivaling the local unit of and Flipkart of Walmart Inc in the huge Indian market. JioMart will distribute food in over 200 cities across the country, Damodar Mall, the Indian conglomerate's chief executive of grocery retail, said on Twitter 23 May 2020 . Mumbai-headquartered Reliance did not announce the launch of JioMart at a time when it is selling $7bn in new shares.

Reliance launched a small JioMart distribution pilot in selected areas of Indian financial capital Mumbai late last month, days after announcing that Facebook Inc will invest $5.7 billion for 9.99 per cent stake in the digital unit of the company, Jio Platforms.

By capitalizing on India's 40 crore-strong user base for Facebook's WhatsApp messaging service, the partnership will help Reliance roll out service to groceries and small businesses in India.

JioMart, the Reliance retail arm's e-commerce company, provides free express grocery delivery from mom-and - pop stores in the neighbourhood. This will pose a daunting challenge for local competitors, who are also betting heavily on grocery stores for their growth.

The launch comes as India is experiencing a surge in cases involving coronavirus. After lockdown restrictions aimed at curbing the spread of the new coronavirus are eased.

The oil-to-telecoms giant, controlled by Mukesh Ambani, India's richest man, did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment on the launch.

Reliance is on a fundraising spree with Jio Channels, which houses Jio Infocomm telecoms ventures, attracting a whopping $10 billion in a month from investors including Facebook, KKR & Co Inc and General Atlantic.