online retail

Russia’s shoppers are buying more goods online than ever before. E-retail sales have grown at a rate of around 26 per cent a year and 57 per cent of non-grocery retail spending is now made online.

This may seem odd for a nation that prefers to pay in cash and doesn’t have a reliable postal service, both typically important for e-retail. Attitudes to other payment methods are changing, however, and some home grown businesses have adapted their approach to suit Russian preferences. Read more

India’s Snapdeal, an online marketplace akin to EBay, is powering ahead, with sales growing five-fold between 2012 and 2013. But what is unusual is that it in a male-dominated society in which men hold the purse strings, it is women who are driving much of the growth.

Kunal Bahl, chief executive, says the company could realistically make sales of between $10bn and $20bn in the next five years. This compares to current annual sales of almost $1bn, according to Bahl. Read more

Last year, eBay began a partnership with Snapdeal, an Indian online marketplace, investing an undisclosed sum. Now it has said it will lead a funding round of over $133m in the company.

It is part of a wider move by international groups to foster the Indian ecommerce industry and a sign of consolidation in a sector which still has a lot of scope for growth. Read more

From flash ‘Guchi’ trainers to fashionable ‘Caiwen Kelai’ boxers, Mumbai’s popular Chor Bazaar (meaning “thieves’ market”) can fulfil all your luxury desires. Often for less than Rs100 ($1.62) a pop.

India’s market for counterfeit luxury goods is expanding at a compound annual growth rate of as much as 45 per cent, according to a new report from the the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India. But some analysts reckon the numbers themselves lack the ring of authenticity. Read more

Being recognised by Bollywood is often the ultimate accolade for anything in India – an issue, a person, a business. But the folks at India’s number one matrimonial website seem admirably unfazed by the imminent launch next year of a Bollywood romcom, ‘Running Shaadi.com‘. Read more

Tech worship

For the last week, the streets of Mumbai have been lit up – by brightly coloured posters loudly announcing Diwali sales and by spectacular fireworks that left the dogs howling. It seemed like typical festival fever.

But if celebrations this Diwali are anything to go by, India is developing fast: two reports from the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (Assocham) show that online shopping grew, and sales of firecrackers fell this Diwali. Read more

It’s curious to see where the three Soviet-born tycoons who sold their 50 per stake in TNK-BP to Rosneft this year will invest the proceeds of the deal. While some are tempted to stick to oil, Leonard Blavatnik, the chairman of Access Industries, has branched out into the booming Russian e-commerce industry, buying a stake in Lamoda, the online fashion retailer. Read more

The king of online marketplaces is teaming up with local players as it looks to make headway in India’s unique and growing market.

On Tuesday, eBay said it was going into a commercial partnership with Snapdeal, an Indian online shopping platform set up in 2010, as well as investing in the company. Read more

As beyondbrics reported last week, India’s online user base is now the third largest in the world. Yet, shopping websites haven’t taken off quite as fast as other internet services. India’s rotten infrastructure is usually blamed, with its traffic-blocked roads delaying delivery.

But one company has shown that the challenges can be overcome – at a price. Read more

The online retail revolution that has sent Blockbuster, HMV and Comet to the wall in the UK is nowhere near as pronounced in Russia where digital shoppers account for only 2 per cent of total retail sales. But as increasing numbers of Russian consumers hook up to the internet, online sales are soaring and are expected to reach $25bn by 2014, according to McKinsey, the consulting company. Read more

When it comes to internet users, India is growing fast. While the number of internet users globally rose 7 per cent last year, the figure was 41 per cent in India.

And this is creating some interesting opportunities – not least for clothing retailers. Read more

As more and more of the world gets internet access, it’s tempting to measure progress in emerging economies by the number of people online. Is there a better or more revealing way of measuring relative strengths? How about the internet economy as a proportion of GDP?

A report released on Monday by the Boston Consulting Group, The $4.2 Trillion Opportunity, does exactly that for the G20, and has a few surprising insights along the way. Read more

There seems to be no limit to Apple-related knock-offs in China. Last year, a fake Apple store in the southwestern Chinese city of Kunming made waves, and fake iPhones and iPads are easily found all over the place.

Now, the latest idea is to pay for a fake ‘sent from my iPhone’ tagline. Read more