The $106 billion Tata Group aims to ramp up its Super App plan by adding categories such as electronics, groceries, fashion and lifestyle, beauty, travel, health, education, and entertainment. These categories will be added in a sequence, and not everything will be done at one go, said N Chandrasekaran, chairman of Tata Group in an exclusive interview to BusinessToday.In.
Tata Group is building the Super App under the newly formed Tata Digital. It is for this ambitious e-commerce play, the group is looking to buy controlling stake in India's biggest online grocery company BigBasket and e-pharmacy chain 1mg.
"Each of our brands service 10-12-15-20 million customers. We are trying to give consumers products and services they need. Not necessarily only the Tata brands, but more. It is an open architecture. We will have a strong loyalty programme, payments engine, financial products and other categories," said Tata chairman.
Chandrasekaran plans to bring together the group's retail companies - Trent, Infinity Retail, Tata Consumer Products, Titan and Voltas - and financial products companies - Tata Capital, Tata Asset Management, Tata AIA, Tata AIG - for powering the Super App. Besides, Tata Motors can sell cars, Tata Realty can sell flats, Vistara and Air Asia can sell flight tickets, and Taj Hotel can rent the rooms, said sources in the know.
When asked about the timing of the Super App launch, Chandrasekaran said, "there are a couple of dependencies, so I am not able to give you a date." However, he added that the Group intends to simplify the lives of consumers through the Super App.
"The group has a very large number of consumers. They love the brand and want to do business with the group. But we need to offer them products and services that not only meet their requirements but also simplify their lives. The best way we can simplify lives is to build a digitally connected enterprise, which will bring together products and services and all other needs of consumers so that we give them what they deserve, require and desire," he said.
However, the e-commerce application will face stiff competition from the giant players in the market like Amazon, Walmart-owned Flipkart and JioMart. Billionaire Mukesh Ambani has also ventured into e-retail space tying up with Facebook to use WhatsApp to deliver goods from kirana stores.
During COVID-19 pandemic, Tata Group moved fast in creating new businesses like Tata Digital, said Chandrasekaran. "We have been on this thinking for some time, but we have moved quite fast on those lines in the last 10 months," he said.