According to two sources familiar with the matter at hand, Alphabet Inc’s Google is in talks with the Indian government to integrate its shopping services with the country’s open e-commerce network ONDC.
In late April, India launched its Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC) in an attempt to boost traction of e-commerce in its burgeoning market.
According to Indian government estimates, the e-commerce market in 2021 was worth more than $55 billion in gross merchandise value and is set to grow to $350 billion by the end of this decade.
Google’s interest in India’s ONDC is backed on the government’s initiative for increasing the traction for digital commerce.
Google’s existing shopping business works solely as an aggregator of online listings and doesn’t carry out any order fulfilment like delivery, unlike Amazon.
Google’s spokesperson declined to comment on whether it was in talks with the Indian government.
“We remain committed to focus on the enablement of small and medium businesses to leverage digital for deeper discovery and payments capabilities with Google Pay,” said Google’s spokesperson in reference to its payments service.
With the ONDC project, the Indian government aims to level the playing field by reducing the cost of doing business for any seller who wants to list their products online.
The ONDC programme aims to join 30 million sellers and 10 million merchants online, and cover at least 100 cities and towns by August.