AskmeBazaar, the lifestyle marketplace, is looking at moving into the food and healthcare segments. The company is planning to introduce two new stores, AskmeFresh (to deliver fresh food) and Askme Meds (to deliver medicines). This appears to be a bold step in the wake of the recent directives from the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI). The Authority has instructed online marketplaces that are selling groceries and other eatables to register under the Food Safety and Standards (FSS) Act if they wish to continue with their food related selling.
AskmeBazaar is looking to launch AskmeFresh and Askme Meds in 38 cities over the next three months. Ankit Jain, CEO of AskmeGrocery is confident that the venture will do well. He says,
“Being in grocery business for the last three years, we have perfected our model and have taken a conscious decision to enter now.”
Unhappy endings in the recent past
Quite a few online grocery stores have found the going tough and quietly shut shop. Flipkart had to close down Nearby, LocalBanya had taken a sabbatical from which it is yet to return, and PepperTap and Grofers have limited their area of operations.
However, studies have shown that there is great scope in the market, and companies need to look for the best way to work things out.
AskmeBazaar had bought online grocery store BestAtLowest last year, and added it to AskmeGrocery. The company is clearly serious about working on its grocery segment.