An e-commerce venture between Meta, Reliance Retail, and Jio Platforms is bringing grocery shopping to WhatsApp through the JioMart app. It intends to provide a global end-to-end shopping experience on the popular messaging platform.
The launch of JioMart on WhatsApp is followed by Meta and JioMart beginning to test an integration with select users. If successful, the commerce engine could prove to be a significant source of revenue for WhatsApp, which has primarily avoided serving ads to users of the app.
Customers will be able to browse the entire grocery catalog of JioMart on WhatsApp, add items to a cart and make payments via local payments rail UPI without ever leaving the instant messaging service, the companies said.
WhatsApp, which has a base of half a billion Indians each month, was approved to extend its UPI-powered payments feature to 100 million users earlier this year after several delays and setbacks.
Jio also announced it would be spending $25 billion to debut 5G services in the country in October this year and aims to reach “every town” in the South Asian market by the end of next year.
JioMart is the $221 billion Indian conglomerate’s attempt at taking on Amazon and Flipkart in India. Ambani’s Reliance Retail is the country’s largest retail chain, but it currently has limited e-commerce offerings.