Russian e-commerce major Wildberries to add self-employed vendor products to offering

Russian e-commerce major Wildberries to add self-employed vendor products to offering
Wildberries is latest to add production of SMEs to its marketplace
By bne IntelliNews March 4, 2020


Russia's largest e-commerce retailer Wildberries intends to sell the produce of self-employed individuals on its platform, Kommersant daily reported on March 2. The products would include artisanal apparel, footwear, accessories, and souvenirs.

Kommersant notes AliExpress is using the same model of working with small self-employed producers as Russia’s online sites all move towards adding “market place” functionality to their sites to enable SMEs to reach their vast audiences. Part of this model is the online sites provide the logistics and payment services allowing small producers to focus fully on production and grow their businesses.

Wildberries could increase the amount of its supplies by at least 3,000 by 2020 to a total of 18,000 due to the initiative, the company's representatives told the daily. However, quality control issues could complicate the adoption of such new sellers on the platform, analysts surveyed by the daily believe.

It is likely that Russian online retailers will continue to adopt similar products, services and techniques, as the e-commerce markets satiates.

Previously Sberbank CIB estimated that the "big four" Russian e-commerce operators – AliExpress Russia, Wildberries, Ozon and Beru –are anticipated to grow in 2019-2022 at an annual rate of 39%, outgrowing the market that is seen as expanding at 23%, and achieving a total market share of 39% by 2022.

Sberbank CIB analysts argued that, "four strong players with developed ecosystems might be too many in a market of Russia's size for sustainable and profitable growth," and see "consolidation in the market is imminent. " As reported by bne IntelliNewsWildberries kicked off 2020 with the launch of its European operations in Poland, offering almost half of the brand assortment of its Russian platform on