Paytm is starting an ambitious program to bring online a part of the $70 Billion annual imports from China. Paytm has already marked 300 Chinese suppliers of electronics and lifestyle products. It has also identified 100 Indian merchants who will link with these providers.
More than 25 importers have been trained by Paytm to source their imports from China via this process, and the company aims to increase this number to 10,000. This program is now in its conception stage and the company will liaison with the merchants via emails, with logistics and payments support. The goods will ship in 7 to 25 days and reach the dealer’s doorstep depending upon the mode of transport.
The latest process will help Indian merchants source their imports more efficiently and get them better margins. Paytm says that inventory is the third most important focus of the company after logistics and payments. The Indian SME’s cost will come down three times since importing goods from local distributors often leads to the shuffling of products a couple of times increasing the cost. Sellers can now buy in bulk from China and store products in Paytm’s India warehouses. They will have to pay duties close to 30% at the time of sale and not in bulk.
Paytm also provides a grace period before the payments are made and this will help to free capital which can be used to increase the volume of trade and earn more profits.
The news comes at a time when e-commerce marketplaces and sellers are having a tumultuous relationship. In recent times small merchants have ganged together and threatened to quit after what it calls a flawed new return policy by Flipkart. Online market players are often accused of one-sided decisions, abrupt commission changes, lack of communication, and reconciliation.