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NPCI to acquire up to 10% stake in government's e-commerce project ONDC

Even as ONDC prepares for a public launch in September, it has started the groundwork for enabling business-to-business commerce transactions on the network

August 31, 2022 / 06:30 PM IST
Representative image

Representative image

The National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) has received approvals from Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and Finance Ministry to acquire up to 10 percent stake in Open Network For Digital Commerce (ONDC), a government initiative to rival foreign e-commerce majors in the local market, sources told CNBC TV18 on August 31.

Additionally,  Bank of India is also in the process of investing in ONDC and may receive 5 percent to 7 percent stake, the sources added.

The Economic Times was first to report on this development.

To be sure, NPCI's CEO Dilip Asbe is already a member of ONDC's Advisory Council.

Also Read: Understanding ONDC, the open network billed to be the UPI of e-commerce

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Moreover, the sources also said that ONDC is in talks with three potential investors, including NPCI and BoI. The government's e-commerce portal is likely to have twenty (20) stakeholders in total, including seventeen (17) already on board.

ONDC aims to do for digital commerce what UPI has done for digital payments—expand the space and make the service accessible even at the grassroots, experts have said.

The open network seeks to increase e-commerce penetration in the country to 25 per cent in the next two years, reaching 900 million buyers and 1.2 million sellers through the open network, while hitting the $48-billion mark in terms of gross merchandise value.

Also Read: Explained | How ONDC will change the e-commerce game

Even as ONDC is preparing for a public launch in September, it has started the groundwork for enabling business-to-business (B2B) commerce transactions on the network.

Earlier this month, tech giant Microsoft joined the interoperable e-commerce programme backed by the Indian government. The company said that it plans to launch a shopping app for group buying which will be integrated with ONDC. This also makes Microsoft the first among big tech peers like Amazon, Google and Meta (formerly Facebook) to join the network.
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