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Ola/ONDC: Unfolding Collaboration
Ola has tied with a government-backed Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC) to offer a combined Food Delivery Service. The company has been testing the feature for the past month among its employees and a few users.
The feature is currently available on the application titled “Ola ONDC Food.” The company also confirmed that it will not be introducing a separate delivery app for the collaboration and shall insert the feature in its “own” application but as a different segment (1).
This move is significant for the company as it will pose direct competition to Uber, Swiggy, Zomato, etc., a combined competitive move to the food & mobility sector (2). Currently, the feature is rolled among selected users but shall be available soon for public access.
Meanwhile, the founder and CEO of Ola, Bhavish Aggarwal is considering appointing a CEO for its cab division and it is expected by ET, that the new CEO to be an ex-Unilever executive. Bhavish has served so far as the company’s CEO and oversees its cabs and eScooter sector (3).
ET stretches, the new CEO to be Hemant Bakshi, a likable candidate for the position who was formerly headquartered in Southeast Asia and served as the country head of Unilever Indonesia and is currently working in Singapore as the global head and executive vice president of Unilever Marketplace (4).
What is ONDC?
ONDC, the Open Network for Digital Commerce is a digital commerce platform launched by the government of India as a step ahead to make India a digital country. The platform aims to encourage fair competitive commerce rates and offer improved user convenience.
ONDC is a prime example of the government’s innovative approach that broadens the range of options available to the people of India. It offers a unified and diversified dynamic digital commerce landscape conspiring several segments in its one-stop platform.
ONDC is developed for establishing smooth operations with a user-friendly platform that eliminates the need for relying on third-party delivery applications to help Indians have ease with online shopping, focusing more on hassle-free and comfortable eCommerce solutions.
What is Ola?
ANI Technologies Pvt. Ltd., aka Ola, is a mobility platform, an online cab aggregator serving over 250 cities in India, the United Kingdom, Australia, and New Zealand via its mobile application for booking cabs and connecting drivers to customers.
Importance of ONDC Collaboration
The news breaking Ola’s ties with government-backed Open Network for Digital Commerce for food delivery service is trending, but did you know this is the company’s fourth attempt in the food and transport sector?
Ola has been testing the ONDC collaborative feature on its application since August and is now available to a limited number of users and workers titled, “Ola ONDC Food.”
The company’s last attempt was in 2022 when it was planning to collaborate with its cloud kitchen company for a 10-minute grocery delivery (5). The company made its first attempt in July of 2015 when it launched a separate grocery store in Bengaluru and a meal delivery app in March of 2015.
However, within a span of nine months the company shut down both Ola Store (6) and Ola Cafe (7) without mentioning any details to which in the recent attempt, the company does not plan to launch a separate application but integrate the feature in its existing application.
ONDC is making waves in the mobility sector as the platform plans to onboard significant collaborative initiatives with major companies in the sector for its open mobility plan to assist customers in booking rides from various sources of their choice (8).
According to sources, the platform also plans to integrate other modes of transportation such as metro, cars, and buses. The company has already onboarded major names in the industry and the recent Ola ties have attracted several headlines.