Sellers on Flipkart jittery about deal

Clueless about talks with Walmart and the likely impact on business, says AIOVA

Published - May 04, 2018 10:08 pm IST - NEW DELHI

 Online vendors want clarity on the way forward to enable them to plan accordingly.

Online vendors want clarity on the way forward to enable them to plan accordingly.

The proposed $12-billion Flipkart-Walmart deal has left merchants selling products through the e-commerce platform jittery as they claim to be clueless about the ongoing negotiations and its possible impact on their business.

These sellers are demanding clarity on the way forward on the grounds that they too need to prepare their business plans accordingly, in light of the deal that is likely to value Flipkart at about $20 billion.

‘ No update’

According to a spokesperson of the All India Online Vendors’ Association (AIOVA), which has 3,500 sellers on large platforms like Flipkart and Amazon, the sellers community has received no communication or update whatsoever so far on the protracted talks that have been going on for months now.

“There has been no communication from Flipkart or other parties involved in the matter. While we understand that the deal discussions are private, it leaves us in the dark as to what is the future for us on the platform. We want to get clarity on the way forward as we also need to plan accordingly,” said the spokesperson.

The comments are significant given that global retail giant Walmart is inching closer to sealing the deal to buy a majority stake in Flipkart for as much as $12 billion, even though rival Amazon is still jostling to turn the deal in its favour. Irrespective of the final suitor, the Flipkart buy would be one of the largest deals in the Indian retail sector and by far, the biggest in the country’s booming e-com market.

When contacted, a Flipkart spokesperson said, “we know that we have remained steadfastly focused on growing the Flipkart business and will continue to do this along with our seller ecosystem.”

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