Blinkit to expand dark stores count by 40%
NEW DELHI: Quick commerce player Blinkit is looking to expand its micro-fulfilment centres or dark stores, targeting up to 40 per cent increase in store count in the next 12 months, according to company CEO Albinder Dhindsa.
The company, which was acquired by online food delivery firm Zomato last year, currently has over 400 dark stores that act as warehouses. “We have identified several new high potential neighbourhoods in existing as well as new cities. We should start seeing the net dark store number increase going forward,” Dhindsa said in an earnings statement.
He further said, “We are seeking opportunities for store openings in high potential areas based on the data our systems generate, the management bandwidth and time to supply creation.”
Dhindsa, however, said unlike the food delivery business, the growth in quick commerce business is dependent on various factors such as availability of product from the brand, seller ability and supply chain capacity.
“Only when we feel confident that we can provide a great experience for our customers in a high potential location, do we start the process of opening new stores. Currently, we believe that we can comfortably grow our dark store count by around 30-40 per cent over the next 12 months,” he added. This will also depend on the company’s ability to find the best and most cost effective locations for these stores, Dhindsa said.
In the third quarter, he said Blinkit was less impacted compared to the food delivery business as “our typical purchase basket tends to be more skewed towards essential/ non-discretionary spends.” The slight downward pressure on average order value might be a result of the slowdown where customers are preferring to buy smaller packs instead of larger ones, he said.
Blinkit posted a revenue of Rs 301 crore in the third quarter ended December 31, 2022, up 28 per cent quarter-on-quarter.
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