Jio Platforms has tied up with Meta-owned WhatsApp to allow users to browse and purchase products within the messaging app, the social networking giant and Reliance Industries’ digital arm said on August 29.
The end-to-end shopping experience will let users browse the entire grocery catalogue of JioMart, the digital commerce platform of Mukesh Ambani-owned RIL, add items to cart, and make the payment to complete the purchase without leaving the WhatsApp chat window, a release issued by the two companies at the end of the RIL’s 45th annual general meeting (AGM) said.
"One example of an innovative customer experience that we are proud of developing is the first-ever end-to-end shopping experience with JioMart on WhatsApp. The JioMart on WhatsApp experience furthers our commitment of enabling a simple and convenient way of online shopping to millions of Indians," RIL chairman and managing director Mukesh Ambani said.
Earlier addressing the AGM, Ambani announced the rollout of 5G services by Jio, the RIL’s telecom and broadband arm, within two months. The company will invest close to Rs 2 lakh crore to launch the 5G services and spend Rs 75,000 crore over the next five years on its oil-to-chemicals business, he said.
Consumers can start shopping on JioMart via WhatsApp by simply sending ‘Hi’ to the JioMart number (+917977079770) on WhatsApp.
The companies said the launch was part of a strategic partnership between Meta and Jio Platforms to accelerate India's digital transformation and provide businesses of all sizes opportunities to fuel economic growth in the country.
"Excited to launch our partnership with JioMart in India. This is our first-ever end-to-end shopping experience on WhatsApp—people can now buy groceries from JioMart right in a chat, " Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg said in a Facebook post on August 29.
Business messaging was an area with real momentum and chat-based experiences would be the go-to way people and businesses communicate in the years to come, he said.
Meta (previously Facebook) invested $5.7 billion in Jio Platforms in April 2020 for a 9.99 percent stake. Along with this investment, Jio Platforms, Reliance Retail and WhatsApp had also signed a commercial partnership to further accelerate Reliance Retail's New Commerce business on the JioMart platform using WhatsApp.
Last year, Ambani said the two companies had launched an initial set of integrations between WhatsApp and JioMart on a trial basis.
“Our vision is to propel India as the world's leading digital society. When Jio platforms and Meta announced our partnership in 2020, Mark and I shared a vision of bringing more people and businesses online and creating truly innovative solutions that will add convenience to the daily lives of every Indian," Ambani said on August 29.
Isha Ambani, executive director of Reliance Retail Ventures, also demonstrated a step-by-step walkthrough of how a customer can place orders on JioMart through the WhatsApp interface during the AGM.
She also said that Reliance Retail’s digital commerce platforms recorded nearly six lakh orders on a daily basis in FY22, which was two and half times more than last year. Visits to the digital platforms were up 2.3 times to 4.5 billion over the previous fiscal.
"We have accelerated our New Commerce initiative, which is powered by the spirit of inclusion. Since our launch two years ago, we have grown our merchant partner base to over 20 lakh partners. We add about 1,50,000 partners a month, and are on course to partner with 1 crore merchants as we expand our presence to cover the entire country, serving over 7,500 towns and 3 lakh villages in the next 5 years" she said.Disclosure: Moneycontrol is a part of the Network18 group. Network18 is controlled by Independent Media Trust, of which Reliance Industries is the sole beneficiary.