Ekart to now offer full-fledged courier services

Ekart, Fipkart's logistics unit, is set to emerge out of its parent's shadow by offering full-fledged  courier services to customers.

The logistics provider that was incubated to deliver goods ordered on Flipkart will now take on large courier companies such as DTDC, Blue Dart, DHL and FedEx.

The courier service will help bolster Ekart's new positioning as an independent logistics powerhouse, with Flipkart recently deciding to hive off the unit to allow it to cater to other companies.

Ekart's clients now include Madura Garments as well as online retailers Jabong and Paytm.

''We plan to capture 5-10 per cent of the overall courier market, that's worth Rs2,200 crore,'' said Amitesh Jha, vice-president at Ekart.

To start with, the pick-up service will be available only in Bengaluru, where Flipkart started piloting cash-on-delivery, and created a new normal in e-commerce.

Soon, the services will be expanded to Delhi, and then to top 8-10 cities by June, and top 50 cities by September. It will deliver to 4,000 locations.

Ekart will have a website and a mobile app through which anyone can book a pick-up.

Wish Masters, or delivery persons, will come, pack and ship the parcel. They carry anything weighing up to 10kg, baring perishable goods like, bullion and jewellery. ''We will even carry homemade pickle - but we don't shift houses,'' said Jha.

So, no more packing and visiting courier offices. And all this is free.

Jha said this is part of a larger vision – to transform India's supply chain. Recently ekart opened its services to Shopclues, YepMe, Paytm and four others.

''We hope to significantly increase our non-Flipkart and Myntra revenue by the end of this year,'' said Jha. At present, it is handling more than eight million orders every month, mostly for Flipkart and Myntra.