Wal-Mart India Woos Mom-and-Pop Stores to Tap $50 Billion

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (WMT) started an e-commerce website to supply goods to mom-and-pop merchants in India as the world’s largest retailer seeks to dominate a market it estimates will be worth $50 billion by 2020.

“The entire focus is on cash-and-carry,” Krish Iyer, chief executive officer and president of Wal-Mart in India, said in an interview in New Delhi today. “We have the team, and the size of the prize is big.”

Wal-Mart is counting on its online operations to help fuel sales as it has been grappling with a slowdown both at home and abroad, increasing pressure to wring more growth from the Internet. The Indian website is only for existing users of its members-only wholesale stores, and could help bring in orders from small businesses that are more than 20 kilometers (12 miles) away from outlets and aren’t serviced by sales reps, Iyer said.

The retailer this month promoted Latin America executive Fernando Madeira to chief executive officer of Walmart.com, the e-commerce division that’s leading the company’s battle against Amazon.com Inc. Online revenue accounts for less than 3 percent of the Bentonville, Arkansas-based group’s total sales.

The web-based ordering platform is being being piloted in two cities -- Hyderabad in southern India and Lucknow in the north -- and will be rolled out across all its stores by January next year, Iyer said.

Photographer: Udit Kulshrestha/Bloomberg

Two customers with share a laugh as they browse teas on display at a Walmart India Pvt. Best Price Modern Wholesale store in the town of Zirakpur on the outskirts of Chandigarh. Close

Two customers with share a laugh as they browse teas on display at a Walmart India Pvt.... Read More

Close
Open
Photographer: Udit Kulshrestha/Bloomberg

Two customers with share a laugh as they browse teas on display at a Walmart India Pvt. Best Price Modern Wholesale store in the town of Zirakpur on the outskirts of Chandigarh.

To contact the reporter on this story: Adi Narayan in Mumbai at anarayan8@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Stephanie Wong at swong139@bloomberg.net Suresh Seshadri

Press spacebar to pause and continue. Press esc to stop.

Bloomberg reserves the right to remove comments but is under no obligation to do so, or to explain individual moderation decisions.

Please enable JavaScript to view the comments powered by Disqus.