Amazon launched the product almost three years ago under the name Junglee. It was renamed Local Finds last year when it rolled out in Bengaluru. It was later expanded to Mumbai, Hyderabad, and Chennai. Amazon told the AIM Group last year that it might expand the consumer- and small-business-to-consumer project worldwide.
Initially, it included only crafts, designs, books and used electronics. (“Crafts” was pretty broad; it included jewelry and a wide range of other products.) It was expanded last week to include 23 categories of new and used goods — including the original four, plus office products, beauty, musical instruments, and cars and motorbikes. Amazon-India will continue to facilitate delivery and payments, effectively giving buyers and sellers the perks of both an e-commerce and classifieds site.
Media Information Online reported Local Finds program lets sellers start selling on any scale thanks to simple documentation and fast payment disbursements.
Mahendra Nerurkar, director of Local Finds, (LinkedIn profile), said more than 70,000 sellers have listed items on the platform since its launch in January 2017. Given the power of Amazon and the size of the markets, that’s tiny.
“The expansion of our Local Finds program is aimed at empowering sellers to locally sell products across various new categories and reach more customers,” Nerurkar said in a statement. “This is in line with our objective of providing our sellers with the best opportunities to grow and our customers with the widest selection to choose from.”
Amazon is competing directly with the “stuff” categories on Quikr.com and OLX.in, the country’s two leading horizontal sites. Neither gets directly involved in transactions, although Quikr offers a pickup and delivery service. Other e-commerce platforms like Shopify, Zepo, Martjack operating in India, but Amazon is setting lower delivery and transaction fees. On Local Finds, sellers can list for free and only pay a 40 rupee (62 cents U.S.) delivery fee, with a 3 percent transaction fee.