- Cloudtail’s growth is despite running into regulatory hurdles that resulted in some downtime in the January quarter
- The company is a joint venture of Amazon and NR Narayana Murthy’s Catamaran Ventures
- Cloudtail’s expenses went up by 27% to INR 8,899 Cr during the previous financial year
Amazon’s Largest Seller Cloudtail India reported revenue growth of 25% to INR 8,945 Cr in the year ended March 2019, the Amazon affiliated company announced. Cloudtail is the single largest seller on Amazon’s India marketplace. However, the revenue growth at Cloudtail comes even though seller ran into regulatory issues that resulted in some downtime in January and February. It is owned by Prione Business Services, a joint venture between Amazon India and Infosys founder NR Narayana Murthy’s Catamaran Ventures.
The company had reported a loss of INR 4.11 Cr in FY18 and a profit of INR 1.6 Cr in FY17. Cloudtail reported a profit of INR 29.4 Cr in 2018-19.
The filings also said that Cloudtail’s expenses went up by 27% to INR 8,899 Cr during the previous financial year, even as its revenue grew. The majority of those expenses (INR 8,537 Cr) went into purchasing stock or inventory. The Cloudtail revenue growth comes in spite of the company witnessing a major change in ownership of its holding company to comply with foreign direct investment regulations, which affected Amazon’s India business gravely.
In February this year, Catamaran Ventures had increased its stake in Cloudtail’s parent company to 76% from 51% earlier. This reduced JV partner Amazon Asia’s stake to 24% from 49% after the implementation of Press Note 2. Cloudtail thus was not an Amazon group company anymore and became eligible to sell on the marketplace.
It was reported that thousands of products remained missing from the virtual shelves of Amazon and Flipkart, which together accounted for 70% of India’s online retail market. Amazon, however, said in the following earnings call that the impact from the changes were minimal, even though both Walmart and Amazon lost close to $50 Bn in market cap following the changes.
Cloudtail was now reportedly onboarding independent sellers to trade imported food products that ARIPL had prohibited from selling. Government norms only permit the selling of local and packed food items on both offline and online retail channels. The government had emphasized on following the new rules.
Commerce minister Piyush Goyal had also said that these rules should in no way be violated by any company, both in letter and in spirit. He added that the government would not allow ecommerce discounting practices from affecting small shopkeepers.
Amazon India only invested INR 2,800 Cr this year, compared to INR 9,450 Cr in 2018. The reports have also cited analysts stating that the last year’s spike in investment might be due to Amazon’s venture into the grocery business and for the supply chain needed for the same.
There generally is a secret recipe for success and it is nothing but to keep exploring. Amazon has placed themselves among the most successful names through numerous experiments. As Jeffrey P. Bezos started Amazon at Bezos’s garage in 1994, he was 30 and it was all about the faith he had in his intuitions. He sensed the internet revolution from farther and decided to lay the cornerstone for an internet business. He started up with a list of the ‘top 20′ products that could potentially sell on the internet and guess what! Amazon now carries more than 12,231,203 products. How is that for a launch?
Investment is known to be the biggest stumbling block for any startup and Amazon begun his journey as Jeffrey P. Bezos almost spend his parent’s whole personal savings. Further in 1995 Amazon raised a series A of $8M from Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers. Followed by an immense hike in returns of over 55,000% in the year 1999.
Continuous Evolution Strategy
Bezo’s theory of continuous evolution became much familiar as Amazon hurdles over their competitors leaning on to this strategy. This has allowed the company to experiment over several niches and then build them into franchises. Take a glance at the evolution pattern. A website once sold only the books now allow anyone to set up a storefront and sell just about anything.
Continuous evolution idea is nothing but the urge to explore beyond the limits, possibilities. And the best thing that might happen to you then will be that you may find yourself at places no one ever imagined.
Flexible And Focused Ecosystem
As you compare Amazon with other tech giants like Google and Apple, you may realize that Amazon is not much interested in a tightly designed ecosystem of interlocking apps and services. Rather they generate multiple flexible, well-targeted ones considering each market segment and audiences.
Amazon indeed gets benefited enormously with this plan. This is more of a step towards the customer satisfaction. “Our customers are loyal to us right up until the second somebody offers them a better service,” I remember these words from Jeffrey and they still follow the rule with no exception.
Enormous Innovation To Backup The Future
Amazon has launched a hell lot of products and innovative services now, all for one specific reason, the future. Amazon Prime, company’s most successful $99-per-year membership program, the Amazon Echo, and the Amazon Dash Wand are the known innovations of today. And do you know, there is one common factor with all these products. It creates an impression of newity, a curiosity in our minds. This is how it works.
The Art Of Expansion
As mentioned earlier, when you observe Amazon’s success pattern, you can find a remarkable amount of instability. They are not satisfied, they are unsettled, they crave for more. Amazon recently has taken several distinct steps, extensive steps in fact to broaden their business.
Amazon Home service is a dedicated amenity that buys and schedule local professional services. They have begun recruiting local service providers doing the necessary vetting for background checks, insurance, and licensing. Whilst Amazon Fresh was more like a promise as they ensure you the delivery of fresh groceries and specialties from local shops and markets.
Moreover, they have taken this huge step, leasing 40 Boeing 767 widebody jet freighters, flying daily from its hub in Wilmington, Ohio. And guess what! The project became so successful and the airport itself expressed their interest in opening a second runway to increase cargo capacity.