It is hard to say who has the edge in the retail business but you are bang on target that this fight is going to be all about transforming the Kirana experience. Flipkart acquired Wal-Mart India and announced the launch of Flipkart Wholesale. This will be a digital market place to transform the humble Kirana store, and RIL has similar plans on these lines too.

Jio Mart is planning something similar is also attempting through its alliance with big global names like Facebook and now with Google. Therefore, it needs no reiteration that Flipkart Wholesale will be in direct competition with Jio Mart. Wal-Mart already handles 1.5 million members through its network of 28 best-price stores and 2 fulfilment centres.

For Jio, the advantage is the combination of telecom, broadband, Facebook, WhatsApp and Reliance Retail, all under a single roof. Jio Mart will use its telecom outreach and its broad-band network to offer technology based solutions to Kirana owners. Flipkart will also lend financial, logistic and technology support to the Kirana owners so the fight could hot up.

But Jio is well and truly prepared too. Jio Mart has already launched grocery deliveries via WhatsApp in 200 cities across India via SMS. Jio Mart takes care of the fulfilment. Reliance shall on-board Kirana stores on its platform and encourage them to manage their inventory, order management and replenishment system using the Reliance POS platform.