Walmart India Backs Grocery Supply Chain Startup Ninjacart

Walmart India is investing in B2B supply chain management startup Ninjacart, a company that specializes in streamlining the strategic sourcing operations of the grocery sector.

Reports in Fresh Plaza on Friday (Dec. 13) said that Walmart India, alongside Flipkart (which was acquired by Walmart in 2018), led the investment in Ninjacart for an undisclosed sum. In a joint statement, the investors said their work with Ninjacart aims to bolster Walmart India’s Best Price B2B cash-and-carry stores, as well as Flipkart’s online grocery operation, Supermart.

The collaboration and investment will focus on expanding access to quality produce both for consumers and the retailers that supply it, the firms noted.

Ninjacart deploys big data and predictive analytics technologies to support seamless supply chain operations, connecting farmers and suppliers to grocers. The company also manages 1,200 warehouses and 200 collection centers to support the logistics of moving goods.

“Ninjacart’s focus on direct-from-farm sourcing resonates well with Walmart’s commitment to supporting farmers in India,” said Walmart India President and CEO Krish Iyer in a statement.” We are working toward our commitment of sourcing 25 percent of produce in our Best Price cash-and-carry stores directly from farmers by 2021.

“This would help accelerate market access for them and reduce transportation costs,” he continued. “Our new partnership with Ninjacart will help us create more opportunities for smallholder farmers and boost rural incomes, while also improving access to high-quality produce for all our members, including kiranas, hotels, restaurants and businesses around India.”

In another statement, Flipkart Group CEO Kalyan Krishnamurthy said, “Developing Flipkart Supermart over the past year, we have focused on creating the right infrastructure; supporting local farmers, producers and food processors; and building sustainability into the ecosystem, all while creating thousands of new jobs and bringing quality, convenience and value to consumers.”

Earlier this year, Walmart India announced a partnership with HDFC Bank to begin offering a commercial card for buyers within its Best Price Modern Wholesale B2B cash and carry stores.