Flipkart has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Maharashtra Small Scale Industries Development Corporation (MSSIDC) and Maharashtra State Khadi and Village Industries Board (MSKVIB), to bring local artisans, weavers, and other small-scale businesses of the state on to the e-commerce platform. The MoU is part of Flipkart's Samarth initiative that aims to empower local businesses. The company in a statement said that the MoU was signed in the presence of Maharashtra cabinet minister Subhash Desai and Minister of State, Industries, Aditi Tatkare.
Flipkart adds that the partnership under the Samarth programme will enable Maharashtra’s local artisans and weavers to showcase their hallmark products like Khadi, wooden toys, handmade artefacts, and more. The new deal is in line with the Union government's Vocal pe Local push that aims to promote 'Made in India' products and services. Notably, Flipkart's direct competitor Amazon has also launched several initiatives in India in the past such as made in India toy store and more to bring domestic businesses to its platform.
Happy to associate with #FlipkartSamarth programme to enable artisans, weavers, craftsmen & MSMEs from Maharashtra to showcase their products to millions of customers in India@CMOMaharashtra @iAditiTatkare @_Kalyan_K @rajneeeshkumar @Flipkart #vocal4local pic.twitter.com/DBPSutQmUS — Subhash Desai (@Subhash_Desai) February 11, 2021
Flipkart says that the MoU with MSSIDC and MSKVIB under project Samarth will break entry barriers for artisans from Maharastra as they can now enjoy benefits in the form of seamless onboarding, free cataloguing, marketing, account management, business insights, and warehousing support. "This will create avenues to increase business and trade inclusion opportunities for these very important segments of society," the company says.
Speaking more over the development Aditi Tatkare, Minister of State Industries said, "Partnerships like these will give more impetus to Khadi and Village Industries to scale up and generate livelihood opportunities." Flipkart Group Chief Corporate Affairs Officer Rajneesh Kumar also lauded the partnership and added that the e-commerce platform excited to work with MSSIDC and MSKVIB to enhance social and commercial development of local artisans. "Flipkart Samarth is a cherished initiative that provides these businesses with the necessary support, and we hope to continue reaching more such local businesses to help them reap the benefits of e-commerce," Kumar stated in a statement.
Flipkart Samarth programme was first rolled out in 2019 to build a "sustainable and inclusive platform" for the under-served and small businesses to empower them with opportunities and better livelihood. Flipkart Samarth currently supports over 7,50,000 artisans, weavers and craftsmen across India. Recently, Flipkart also announced the availability of the Marathi interface for shoppers on the platform, bringing it closer to consumers in the state.