On the final episode of the three-part series on Amazon Smbhav broadcast on CNN-News18, industry experts discussed ways to bridge offline and online marketplaces, and the opportunities for Indian SMBs to go global.

    The two-day thought summit Amazon Smbhav, conducted under the aegis of , concluded with many Indian SMBs being felicitated. The list of winners is as follows:

    • ‘Woman Entrepreneur of the Year,’ Tanvi Johri of Carmesi
    • ‘Digital SMB of the Year,’ Playshifu
    • ‘Global SMB of the Year,’ Vahdam Teas
    • ‘Best SMB Brand of the Year,’ Pee Safe
    • ‘ of the Year,’ Kadam Haat
    • ‘Innovator of the Year,’ Try and Buy Fashion
    • ‘Youth SMB of the Year,’ Arjun Vaidya, , Dr. Vaidya’s
    • ‘Fastest Growing SMB of the Year,’ Loom Solar
    • ‘Transformation of the Year,’ Being Chef

    Industry and subject matter experts also discussed some of the most pressing challenges that Indian SMBs are facing, and how technology can be used as a tool for scaling up. One panel discussion was titled ‘Physical Retail and Ecommerce: Growing In Harmony,’ and was moderated by Sameer Khetrapal, Director – Category Management with Amazon India. Top leadership of Shoppers Stop, Bata India, Vijay Sales, Amazon India, , participated in the lively discussion where they all agreed upon the premise that it was a mixture of online and offline retail that held the highest promise of sustained success. Sumeet Narang, Founder & MD of Samara Capital, said, “Not companies but ecosystems will win. Having the right ecosystem partner is going to make a difference.” Nilesh Gupta, of Vijay Sales, commented on how online retail has spurred on the massive growth of , and said, “Most customers still buy things both online as well as offline. I think the retail ecosystem is still evolving.” Manish Tiwary, Vice President – Category Management with Amazon India recommended to fledgling SMBs that they use the online platform as a launch pad, to experiment on the platform, to fine tune the product or service online before taking the product offline.

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    In another absorbing panel discussion entitled ‘Blurring Geographical Boundaries For SMBs,’ key leaders from Amazon.com, HSBC, , Vahdam Teas, among others participated to understand what challenges lay ahead for Indian SMBs for scaling up not just in India but also abroad. While HSBC’s Aditya Gahlaut, MD & Head – Global Sales and Receivables spoke about how banks are simplifying transnational transactions, Nicholas Denissen, VP-Small Business with Amazon.com, explained, “We recently opened marketplaces in Australia, Singapore, and the UAE. SMBs look to Amazon to be able to reach such customers around the world. And we’re developing tools to help businesses with complicated challenges like pricing.” Pravir Krishna, MD of TRIFED, a cooperative that sells products made by tribals in India, said that selling products abroad could be a gamechanger for Indian entrepreneurs. “Marketing outside the country fetches twice or three times the price you get within India,” he said.

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    Updated Date: Feb 24, 2020 11:51:26 IST