Google in talks to join India’s open e-commerce network ONDC – sources

A man walks past the ‘Google for India’ sign during the company’s annual technology event in New Delhi, India September 19, 2019. REUTERS/Sankalp Phartiyal/File Photo

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NEW DELHI, May 27 (Reuters) – Alphabet Inc (GOOGL.O) Google is in talks with the Indian government to integrate its shopping services into the country’s open e-commerce network ONDC, two sources familiar with the matter told Reuters. .

Late last month, India soft-launched its Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC) as the government tries to end the dominance of US companies Amazon.com (AMZN.O) and Walmart (WMT). .N) in growing e-commerce. market. Read more

Google’s talks follow the success of its payments business through the government’s initiative for financial transactions, the Unified Payments Interface, said one of the sources, who both declined to be named because they were not allowed to discuss the matter with the media.

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Google’s existing shopping business functions only as an online ad aggregator and does not perform any order fulfillment like delivery like Amazon does.

A Google spokesperson declined to say whether it was in talks with the government.

“We remain committed to focusing on enabling small and medium-sized businesses to leverage digital for deeper discovery and payment capabilities with Google Pay,” the spokesperson said, referring to its payment service. .

Partners of the ONDC project, which currently includes companies like Indian fintech Paytm (PAYT.NS), will display each other’s listings on their platform in search results. The government’s goal is to level the playing field by reducing the cost of doing business for any seller who wants to list their products online.

The ONDC program aims to reach 30 million sellers and 10 million online merchants, and cover at least 100 cities and towns by August.

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Reporting by Munsif Vengattil and Krishna N. Das; Additional reporting by Paresh Dave Editing by Shri Navaratnam

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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