Following the launch of its largest fulfillment center in India, the U.S. e-commerce giant Amazon.com, Inc. has launched its Prime membership program in the country. The Prime service will allow customers in more than Indian 100 cities to get unlimited free one-day and two-day delivery on millions of products. As we reported earlier, the e-commerce company plans to invest up to $3 billion to expand its operations in India, where sees a great potential. According to Morgan Stanley Research, the Indian e-commerce market is estimated to be worth $119 billion by 2020.
Prime Service India
The e-commerce company is giving Indian shoppers a 60-day free trial period to experience the benefits of Prime. The company is offering Prime at an introductory annual subscription fee of INR.499, a discount of INR.500 over the list price of INR.999.
“We are very excited to bring Prime to our customers in India. With Prime, guaranteed one-day delivery becomes an everyday experience instead of an occasional indulgence, and with no minimum purchases, it provides unlimited convenience all year long” said Amit Agarwal, vice-president and country head, Amazon India.
Prime members in 20 cities can also choose same-day, morning or scheduled delivery at a discounted fee of INR 50 per order on over 10,000 products. For deliveries to cities not yet eligible for one-day or two-day delivery, members will receive free delivery with no minimum purchase, the company said in a statement.
Prime products will be delivered through the Fulfillment-By-Amazon (FBA) channel, the company’s gold standard product fulfillment service. The service allows sellers to increase their online sales by accessing the company’s fulfillment resources, fast, free delivery options. Sellers are required to send their products to an Amazon fulfillment center and stores.
“Amazon Prime was designed with one simple objective, to delight our customers. Tens of millions of members around the world enjoy the best of Amazon with a Prime membership, and now this one-of-a-kind program is available to our millions of customers in India,” Vice-President Worldwide Prime Greg Greeley said.
Amazon in India
In 2014, Amazon.com, Inc. announced plans to invest $2 billion in India. Last month, CEO Jeff Bezos said in Washington that the company will spend additional $3 billion in the country, bringing the total investment to $5 billion. Amazon has more than 40,000 employees in India.
In addition to e-commerce, the also sees a space for its Web Services in India. The company plans to open a Web Services Cloud Region and a software engineering and development center in Hyderabad this year.
In a letter to shareholders in April, Bezos said that Amazon is working to promote e-commerce in India. Last year, the company launched a program called Chai Cart in India, deploying three-wheeled mobile carts to visit navigate in a city’s business districts, serve tea, water and lemon juice to small business owners and teach them about selling online.
In February, the online retailer launched Amazon Tatkal, which enables small businesses to get online in less than 60 minutes. This services provides a suite of launch services including registration, imaging and cataloging services, as well as basic seller training mechanisms. It is now being offered in 25 Indian cities.
Shares of Amazon.com, Inc. are up over 7% for the year.