Providing a further fillip to online marketing of products made by Kudumbashree microenterprises, the poverty eradication mission’s city livelihood centres (CLCs) under the National Urban Livelihoods Mission (NULM) have tied up with the e-commerce platform Flipkart.
Three Kudumbashree CLCs, in Kalpetta, Thrissur and Kottayam, have tied up with Flipkart, while the one in Kochi will do so soon for leveraging the power of digital marketing to boost the business of women entrepreneurs under the mission.
Kudumbashree has had an agreement with Amazon since 2019 for making available products manufactured by its women enterprise units to consumers across the country. However, instead of maintaining a centralised inventory in Thiruvananthapuram as in the case of Amazon, it has chosen to go the decentralised route for the agreement with Flipkart.
Kudumbashree products have a wide acceptance within the State, and tying up with e-commerce majors provides it an opportunity to provide a more diverse range to consumers across the country.
The CLCs have been set up by the Kudumbashree to provide marketing support for products manufactured by its entrepreneurs. As the products often find a better market in urban centres, the CLCs can facilitate their decentralised sourcing and marketing, and ensure a good price for them.
For instance, bamboo handicrafts or bamboo rice from Wayanad is rarely sent to Thiruvananthapuram for online marketing. Nor is there enough space available here to display them. In the wake of the Flipkart deal, the CLC at Kalpetta can source these products locally, especially tribal indigenous products, and market these nationally. They can ensure adequate quantities of the product too, without much hassle.
Another advantage is that each CLC can register 100 products of self-help groups for free for the first six months. With four CLCs, there is potential for 400 Kudumbashree products to be registered. Had this been done in a centralised manner, only 100 products could have marketed.
Kudumbashree officials say product registration is over and sourcing for the digital marketing is under way.
Kudumbashree is also keen on increasing the footfall at the CLCs, especially in bigger cities such as Thiruvananthapuram and Kochi, so that microenterprises benefit through increased volume of sales from the CLCs too.