Yet another hyperlocal grocery delivery service is shutting shop. Leading cab aggregator Ola, which is running a hyperlocal grocery delivery service in cities like Bangalore, Gurgaon and Hyderabad, is likely to pull the shutter on the service. Strong rumours are doing the rounds that Ola Store is slowly turning into a white elephant. The Ola Store app has been witnessing a lack of visitors for a while now. The store’s Facebook and Twitter pages are also inactive for the last few weeks.
Downing the shutters one after the other
This is not the first time that a hyperlocal service has been shut down. Earlier, companies including LocalBanya, Grofers and PepperTap had to minimize their area of operations. Lately, Flipkart shut down ‘Nearby’, its pilot hyperlocal delivery app. Does this mean that the scope for online grocery stores is coming down?
With very small profit margins and potholes riddling the logistics sector, the hyperlocal grocery delivery appears to have a bleak future.
Online grocery scene to get better, say experts
However, there is hope. A study by TechSci research has observed that the online grocery market in India is set to grow at a rate of 55% by 2021. The study points out that a majority of India’s young are a part of the workforce, and find themselves with little time to complete their grocery shopping. This presents a large opportunity to service providers. Two factors that will contribute to this projected growth include:
- A wide range of products available at a single place
- Improved logistics
PepperTap and Grofers have reason to rejoice, as Karan Chechi, Research Director with TechSci says,
“BigBasket, Grofers, and PepperTap are the leading players in India online grocery market. These players are anticipated to maintain their dominance in the market through 2021. Few companies are expanding their operations by partnering with local retailers in numerous Indian cities, while others are adopting inventory business model to address the growing demand for everyday consumer products across India.”