Paytm's Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Vijay Shekhar Sharma announced at the inauguration of ONDC's 'Build for Bharat' campaign on Monday that the business will onboard up to 10 million of its merchants onto the Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDDC) platform by the end of 2025.
Paytm has already been used by approximately 11.8 million customers to shop on ONDC. Sharma predicted that the new merchants would increase customer demand on the Network. "If we bring a large number of merchants to the ONDC platform, demand will automatically increase," he added. ONDC, according to Sharma, has become a big participant in e-commerce, with one-fifth of India's 50 million e-commerce consumers now transacting on the platform.
Monolithic e-commerce systems, according to the Paytm founder, generate a lot of overhead. The ONDC platform separates different aspects of the consumer experience, such as vendors, logistics, payments, and customer service, to reduce costs. "Consumer value (on ONDC) will be dramatically different and superior to current e-commerce platforms," he told the audience. Paytm was the first buyer-side app to join ONDC last September. According to Sharma, further integration of Paytm into ONDC will be profitable.
"It's mostly about the technology, which once built can be reused many times." It is intrinsically profitable, unless we spend money capturing consumer market share, which we do not intend to do. "We do not intend to spend any more than what our customers already spend," he stated.
ONDC is a non-profit platform established by the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) to provide an alternative to online purchasing. The Network is not an app, but rather a platform that will "revolutionize" digital commerce. Meanwhile, the platform's operations have been significantly boosted by the recent festival season. The Network's transaction volume reached 4.7 million in November, up from just 1,200 in January of this year. Over 250 localities throughout the country have placed orders with ONDC.
"Right now, we're doing about 200,000 transactions per day across multiple categories." Mobility accounts for the vast majority of these, accounting for approximately 60%. "The remaining 40% comes from other segments such as food delivery, fashion, electronics, and logistics, among others," said Vibhor Jain, Chief Operating Officer and President of network Governance, ONDC.
Food delivery is the Network's second largest sector, followed by fashion, which, according to Jain, is "growing at a rapid pace" as a result of companies like Snapdeal joining ONDC. "In the next five years, if ONDC can become a channel where around 50 percent of the digital transactions in the country take place through the Network, that will be a success for us," he said.