Photo: Hemant Mishra/Mint
Photo: Hemant Mishra/Mint

WS Retail’s FY17 revenue declines 66% to ₹4,628 crore

WS Retail posted revenue of 4,628.1 crore in FY17, compared to 13,921.2 crore in FY16

Bengaluru: WS Retail Services Pvt. Ltd, the largest seller on Flipkart’s marketplace, has posted a 66% drop in overall revenues for the year ended March 2017, after the Indian government passed foreign direct investment (FDI) laws prohibiting any one seller from contributing more than 25% of overall sales of any marketplace.

According to data sourced from business information platform Tofler, WS Retail posted revenue of 4,628.1 crore in FY17, compared to 13,921.2 crore in FY16.

Flipkart had planned to shift a majority of its sales to a handful of third-party sellers referred to as “alpha seller," as Mint reported in April 2016. At that time WS Retail was contributing 35-40% of Flipkart’s business, after Flipkart accelerated its shift to a marketplace model.

Though WS Retail is Flipkart’s biggest seller, the e-commerce company has gradually reduced its dependency on it by working with several new sellers, including Health & Happiness and Tech Connect, Mint reported in January 2017. This was required after the 25% cap was mandated by the Indian government in early 2016.

WS Retail also reported a net loss of 24.3 crore for FY17, although the seller posted a profit of 5.2 crore a year ago in FY16.

WS Retail’s expenses reduced sharply by 66% to 4,643.6 crore in FY17, from expenses of 13,912.7 crore in FY16. The seller also cut down on employee costs by 81% to 11.3 crore in FY17, compared to 60.6 crore in FY16.

According to the filings, WS Retail spent 4,099 crore in purchases of stock in-trade in FY17, compared to 12,911.3 crore spent for buying goods in FY16.

Flipkart’s largest seller was also able to reduce overall transportation and freight costs by 89% in FY17 to 37.6 crore, compared to transportation costs of 371.6 crore in FY16.

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