Ease of Doing Business for MSMEs: Business-to-business (B2B) marketplace for government departments and public sector units (PSUs) to buy goods from MSMEs, Government e-Marketplace (GeM) has crossed the 30-lakh seller milestone in little over five years. Importantly, while it took four years and around five months for the portal to add its first 10 lakh sellers, the second and third set of 10 lakh sellers were onboarded in just 10 months. As of January 27, 2021, GeM had a 10.13 lakh seller base that crossed 30 lakh sellers in November. As of November 21, 2021, 31.54 lakh sellers were registered on the marketplace, data from the GeM portal showed.
GeM was launched in August 2016 to make the government procurement process transparent and faster. The portal is also the largest e-commerce marketplace in the country in terms of seller count. The B2C marketplace Amazon India has over 8.5 lakh sellers while Flipkart is looking at 4.2 lakh sellers by December 2021 from 3 lakh around this Diwali season, according to a company statement in September this year.
However, not all sellers on GeM are transacting as many have been automatically added after their registration on the Udyam portal that is integrated with GeM. “Most of these new registrations are because of integration with Udyam portal since last year. So, whosoever is coming onto the Udyam portal is directly put onto the GeM portal as well. Hence, not all sellers, who opt for simultaneous GeM registration, might be selling on the marketplace. Once they opt for Gem registration, we email them for completing their registration with the listing of goods, etc., while their profile is auto-populated on the GeM portal,” Prashant Kumar Singh, CEO, GeM had told Financial Express Online. The exact number of transacting sellers couldn’t be ascertained.
Since January this year, the number of micro and small sellers also jumped from 4.71 lakh in January 2021 to 7.33 lakh in November so far while 178 service categories also grew to 211. However, product categories had narrowed from over 13,000 to 11,261. On the other hand, the number of orders processed and transaction value also increased. GeM had processed 55.74 lakh orders with a transaction value of over Rs 80,000 crore in January in comparison to 81.22 lakh orders and transaction value of Rs 1.58 lakh crore as of November 21.
The marketplace is currently looking at integrating with India Post for shipment of orders across the country apart from integration with Indian Railways and panchayats to cater to their procurement needs. “India Post integration will be of help specifically to micro sellers who find challenges in getting government orders due to lack of enough packaging and transportation capacities to deliver orders to every nook and corner of the country. Since India Post is available into the country’s deep interiors as well, the delivery obstacle will be removed for such sellers,” Singh had told Financial Express Online.