Open Network for Digital Commerce or ONDC is India’s alternative to the global giants like Walmart and Amazon. It is a government, non-profit initiative that will promote the use of open networks for e-commerce activities. Technically, it is a protocol that will need to be adopted by technology companies that support MSMEs.
It will curb digital monopolies and standardize the onboarding of retailers on digital e-commerce platforms.
- Non-exclusive, non-rivalrous public infrastructure
- Open network
- Voluntary and flexible adoption
- Equal access
Just like UPI changed payment in India, ONDC will transform the e-commerce experience for sellers and consumers.
- ‘Democratize’ digital commerce and move it away from platform-centric models like Walmart, Flipkart, and Amazon.
- Ending monopolies of Amazons and Flipkarts of the e-commerce industry.
- Inclusivity and access for SMEs and MSMEs.
- Empower consumers with more choices.
- Enable more sellers to be on digital platforms.
- Transactions will go through an open network.
- Breakaway from the existing silos by empowering merchants and consumers.
As it is a work in progress, the details are unclear.
- Standardize operations for sellers, including cataloging, inventory, order management, and order fulfillment.
- No platform-centric operations or requirements.
- Increased visibility over the open network.
- Easy adoption for sellers who don’t have a digital presence at present.
- Promote local suppliers and increase their efficiency in logistics and supply chain.
- Reduction in customer acquisition cost.
- A decreased monopoly of large sellers.
- Seamless integration across the supply chain.
- Level the playing field in digital e-commerce.
- Setting up a private sector-led non-profit unit to fast-track the ONDC roll-out.
- A startup mindset will drive change with its futuristic vision, the ease with cutting-edge technology, ‘missionary outlook,’ and a deep understanding of commerce.
- Access to more sellers and therefore more choices
- Better service and faster deliveries with access to local retailers
- Better customer experience
- S. Sharma, chief executive of the National Health Authority
- Nandan M. Nilekani, non-executive chairman of Infosys
- Adil Zainulbhai, Chairman, Quality Council of India
- Anjali Bansal, founder and chairperson, Avaana Capital
- Arvind Gupta, co-founder & head of Digital India Foundation
- Dilip Asbe, MD and CEO of NCPI
- Suresh Sethi, MD & CEO of NSDL
- Kumar Rajagopalan, chief executive of the RAI
- Praveen Khandelwal, Secretary-General of CAIT
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