Amazon is starting to offer its transportation and logistics network as a service to third-party merchants, companies, and direct-to-consumer brands in India. The e-commerce company is trying to replicate a model it has been testing in the U.S. by utilising its extensive delivery network to drive revenue in the important international market. According to the company’s website, the service, known as Amazon Shipping, promises “wide reach and the finest reliability – all at the lowest logistics cost.” The company states that Amazon Shipping “will pick up your packages seven days a week and deliver them to your consumers.”
The retailer claims to be offering its shipping at “competitive rates” and includes a dedicated support channel. Over the past seven years, the retailer has invested over $6.5 billion in India. Weekend deliveries are free, and customers are not bound by a consignment contract, so they are free to revoke the service at any time. According to the website, it has partnered with regional companies Shiprocket, Unicommerce, EasyEcom, ClickPost, and Vinculum for order and delivery management systems. According to an examination of the archived pages, the company has been testing the service in India for at least a few months.
Local companies like Delhivery, Ecom Express, and even established logistical goliaths like Blue Dart and India Post may see difficulties if Amazon extends its shipping business. In India, Amazon’s rival Flipkart, which is backed by Walmart, started to allow outside companies access to its logistics network early this year. The first article about Amazon Shipping appeared in the Indian newspaper Economic Times, which also noted that all types of products—aside from dangerous and hazardous goods—are covered by Amazon Shipping. According to a policy page on Amazon, shipping is currently limited to 99 shipments per order and only provides ground delivery options.
Earlier this year, Amazon launched a service called Buy with Prime in the United States that allowed third-party merchants access to its logistics network. Analysts claim that because Amazon has created an almost “impregnable moat in logistics,” it can now pose a greater threat to competitors like Shopify.
Even though it only serves Amazon, Amazon’s logistics are currently enormous and completely integrated from the fulfilment centre to the doorstep; the logical next step is to open it up to non-Amazon retailers, and that is exactly what is happening, Stratechery’s Ben Thompson wrote earlier this year.