E-commerce shakeout

The rebranding and shift in strategy not only show that Snapdeal has no intention of rolling over for market leaders, but also that the e-commerce space in India is now reaching a make-or-break stage


First came e-commerce company Snapdeal’s massive repositioning exercise with a new logo, tagline and colour palette.

Now comes its setting up a wholesale unit—shifting away from the marketplace model it had obstinately stuck with all these years towards one used by primary rivals Flipkart and Amazon.

The rebranding and efforts to bring in greater efficiency via more control show that Snapdeal has no intention of rolling over for the market leaders—but also that the e-commerce space in India is now reaching a make-or-break stage.

A host of smaller e-commerce companies trail the big ones, and it’s a fair bet that their numbers are going to be winnowed by year’s end.

The festive season is fast approaching and with it, both deep discounts and bumper sales. The casualties this year alone suggest that those not in a healthy position heading into the season won’t last much beyond it. E-commerce is a brutal business—and survival won’t be easy.