The textile ministry on Monday inked a pact with homegrown e-retailing major Flipkart to provide an online marketing platform to handloom weavers across the country, an initiative to boost the handloom sector and uplift manufacturing.
Responding to queries raised on choosing a particular company for the agreement, textile secretary SK Panda said: "What we are starting now is only on a pilot basis, nobody is compelled to sell only to a particular agency. Our aim is to eliminate middlemen, assist the master weaver... After a period of 3 to 6 months we will go for bidding".
Textile minister Santosh Gangwar, who was present on the occasion, emphasised that the focus of this association should be to help weavers and weaver entrepreneurs to produce products in tune with the buyer requirements and grow them significantly so that they may become manufacturers not only at a local but also at national level.
Through this exclusive agreement, Flipkart will provide weavers in India an online marketing platform, infrastructural support in data analytics and customer acquisition.
"We will charge weavers 3-4% commission on sale. There will be no listing charge or any other thing. If a sale happens, then customer will have to pay 3-4% commission. However, we will charge 15% commission from readymade garment suppliers," Ankit Nagori, vice-president - marketplace, Flipkart, said.
"This kind of a coordinated effort has been planned and executed for the first time with Flipkart for handloom weavers which will bridge the missing linkages of market intelligence, market access and logistics and help the Indian weavers in getting remunerative prices for their products," the textiles ministry said.