Flipkart’s just announced that it now has a 100 million registered customers. That’s a big milestone – at 10 crore paying users, Flipkart’s joined a select group of global companies whose customer bases can outstrip the populations of many small nations.
It helps that India’s a big nation, but the achievement still is monumental. With 100 million registered users, one out of every 12 Indians has shopped at Flipkart at some point.
Flipkart’s not the first India firm to hit the milestone though. Paytm has over 130 million users on its wallet, and chat messenger Hike also claims to have 100 million users on its platform. But Hike doesn’t monetize, and not all of Paytm’s 130 million is for its wallet, not its e-commerce arm. To have had 100 million paying customers in 9 short years is no mean feat.
— Sachin Bansal (@_sachinbansal) September 21, 2016
9 years, 100 million @Flipkart registered customers… so humbled and proud! Thank you!
— binnybansal (@binnybansal) September 21, 2016
And markets have rewarded Flipkart’s for bringing the e-commerce revolution to India. In spite of recent devaluations, it is still India’s highest valued startup. It employs over 30,000 people, has one of the swankiest offices in India, and has spawned hundreds of clones – just look at all e-commerce sites with a ‘kart’ in their name.
Flipkart’s clearly been at the forefront of the e-commerce zetigeist in India, but that’s just the first battle of the e-commerce war. It’s garnered marketshare and built a brand. Now a second, and more crucial battle begins – becoming a profitable, viable company. This isn’t going to be easy. Amazon has a $2 billion arsenal at its disposal, and has dug in its heels. Snapdeal too is trying to revive its fortunes with a Rs. 200 crore marketing campaign. Flipkart is the market leader for now, but will have to play hard and make the right moves to stay there.
But for now it can savour the 100 million mark. Whatever one might think of its chances in the e-commerce game, you’d have to agree that congratulations are in order.