Flipkart co-founder Sachin Bansal has said Indian e-commerce companies did not have to side with either Amazon or Alibaba in the impending war of online marketplaces.
Bansal said, "In any sector within the Internet there is an opportunity to build business. I do not think it is a necessity to side with one company or another."
He said this when asked if e-commerce companies would have to choose between Amazon and Alibaba, which is expected to soon announce its entry via Paytm's marketplace. Last year, Bansal and Ola co-founder Bhavish Aggarwal had raised the issue of foreign rivals dumping capital in India. They had urged the government to design policies to favour homegrown companies.
Bansal said, "With anti- or rather select globalisation, there should be a level playing field for homegrown startups. Indian start-ups should not be killed by giants from the US or China."
He also said the internet would drive the services sector.
He further added, "We’re making a huge mistake by not recognising it as a key growth sector."
Flipkart has in the past year faced a series of markdowns by its investors. The most recent was in January by US mutual fund Fidelity Investments, which slashed the valuation of its holdings by over a third. Bansal said funding scenarios continued to be cyclical.
He said, "In 2012 we beat a downturn and then the market started picking up 2013 onwards. And in 2014 and 2015 the same thing happened. Of course, 2016 was the cooling-off period. These are cycles that markets go through."