E-commerce major Amazon and e-grocer Bigbasket are eyeing delivery of alcohol and are likely to kick off the service starting with West Bengal. According to a notice by the West Bengal State Beverages Corporation, expressions of Interest were received from these platforms for online ordering and home delivery of liquor.
The document states that Amazon and Big Basket have been found eligible and invites them to sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU).
Apart from these two, Golden Goenka Commerce Pvt. Ltd. (Sasta Sundar) and Senrysa Technologies Pvt. Ltd. (Next Door Hub) too, have been found eligible.
These two players will join Swiggy, Zomato, Spencerâ€™s Retail and Hip Bar, which have already enrolled to deliver alcohol and have signed a MoU with the state government.
The move comes at a time when Amazon has launched its food delivery service in Bengaluru in a bid to take on Swiggy and Zomato. It is already delivering grocery under Prime Now. Its interest in alcohol delivery is a mark of the moves the company is making to build a strong presence in the food and beverage delivery market in the country.
For Bigbasket, this would be diversifying beyond grocery and personal care products, in a bid to expand avenues of more revenue.
Last month, Swiggy and Zomato forayed into home delivery of alcohol launching the service in Ranchi, which both players then extended to Odisha and West Bengal. Swiggy is now delivering in Kolkata and Siliguri today after obtaining necessary approvals from the West Bengal government.
After liquor sales were allowed across the country, the Supreme Court too, suggested to state government to consider home delivery of alcohol to avoid overcrowding at liquor stores.
â€śWe will not pass any order but states should consider home delivery or indirect sale of liquor to maintain social distancing,â€ť a three-judge bench headed by Justices Ashok Bhushan, Sanjay Kishan Kaul, and BR Gavai, said in the beginning of May while hearing a public interest litigation (PIL) seeking a ban on liquor sale during the lockdown as it was leading to gross violation of social distancing norms.
If and when other state government come forward to allow home delivery of alcohol, Swiggy, Zomato, Amazon and Bigbasket will be able to add more cities and towns to their service.