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Amazon expands into India

03 February 2012 - 16:02 by Graham Miller

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Indian consumers will for the first time be able to carry out safe shopping online with e-commerce giant Amazon this year, after the company officially launched in the country.

The market for online shopping in India is growing at a rate of 50 per cent a year and so Amazon is, unsurprisingly, keen to get a foothold in this period of expansion.

Interestingly, Amazon will not be using its brand name as it is known in the UK and the US for the past 17 years, but will, instead, conduct safe shopping online in India from the domain.

Fourteen thousand different brands, both domestic to India and available internationally, will be sold via the site, totalling a range of more than 12 million different products. VP, Amit Agarwal, told Reuters that the company was excited to start its operations in India so that people could enjoy online shopping across a vast range of different items.

One of Amazon's main rivals in India will be Flipkart, an e-commerce firm that was actually built by two of its former employees. This site may only be five years old but it now sells ten items a minute and hopes to take a billion pounds within three years.

As well as establishing an online presence in India, Amazon has just purchased its first warehouse space, to make it cheaper and faster to deliver products across the country.

Given that the 1.2 billion people who live in India are becoming increasingly affluent, with 52 million people accessing the web regularly, there is still significant room for the e-commerce market to grow and companies like Amazon to reap the benefits. £5.89 billion will be spent online in 2012, according to a report published by the Internet and Mobile Association of India.