Microsoft Joins ONDC As The First International Company To Join ONDC

Microsoft will be looking to offer the social e-commerce or group purchasing experience to India when it is a member of ONDC

A Microsoft spokesperson stated that ONDC will allow buyers and sellers to communicate without relying on an e-commerce platform

In addition to Microsoft, Google and Amazon have also expressed an interest in the digital commerce program

The tech giant based in the US Microsoft is the first company from outside the United States that has joined the Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC) which is the Indian government’s ambitious plan to improve the efficiency of digital commerce in the country.

According to reports, Microsoft will look to introduce social e-commerce or group purchasing experience to India when it is a member of ONDC. The tech giant from the United States will introduce a shopping application specifically for Indian customers.

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An Microsoft spokesperson was quoted within an ET report that stated that the network is beneficial for sellers and buyers. The spokesperson further stated that the network would allow sellers and buyers to connect, without relying on an e-commerce platform.

T Koshy, CEO of ONDC saidthat “By making use of the strength of our users on our open networks, Microsoft, too, can bring their innovative ideas to life such as social commerce in a short time.”

Koshy said she believes that this Microsoft alliance is testimony on the reliability of ONDC.

For sure, Microsoft wasn’t the sole major corporation competing to be a part of the government’s network of digital commerce.

Since in May Google is engaged in talks with ONDC staff to become part of the ONDC network and expand its reach to India such as payments and search. Amazon has also expressed an interest at joining ONDC and ONDC, as did Amazon Country Director in charge of India Consumer Business Manish Tiwary declaring ONDC “a fascinating concept” at the time of its June.

A number of the most prominent companies in India’s tech startup scene have been accepted into ONDC or are currently in discussions to join. In addition to the likes Flipkart, Paytm, Dunzo, Meesho and Snapdeal, ONDC is in talks with more than 200 companies about joining.

The project was announced in April of this year, ONDC has set an ambitious goal of reaching 100 cities by 2022. It is currently operating with 15 towns. Digital commerce, a government initiative, is being promoted to be the UPI for the digital age of commerce.

In its beginning, ONDC was reported as an alternative to Flipkart as well as Amazon’s dominance over the Indian e-commerce market. But, in an interview with Newsexposer Shireesh Joshi, CBO of ONDC was of the view the ONDC project will not be able to compete. the government’s initiative is not going to do that.

We don’t want to take on Flipkart, Amazon. We’re basically an enabler of eCommerce that helps small retailers to benefit from the digitization of commerce by leveraging our networks, Joshi said.

While the government is encouraged by the help that it’s received from the Indian tech startup ecosystem as well as big corporations, there are problems to solve.

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According to a report released by the equity analysis company Jefferies, ONDC is having difficulties in its implementation because of the huge quantity of subjective variables as well as offline workflows in digital commerce, which weren’t present in UPI.

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