A group of merchants that represents small online sellers has reportedly claimed that its members are still waiting for their dues to be cleared by Snapdeal. The online marketplace has allegedly not cleared the payments for eight months, as per a report by ET.
The reasons for the same by the online marketplace include sale of fake products to penalties on returned orders and incorrect charges for packaging and logistics etc. as per an email survey conducted by the association last week.
The All India Online Vendors Association (AIOVA) conducted a survey to ascertain the pending dues and the value of the merchants stock lying at Snapdeal warehouses. About 2,100 members participated in the survey, and as per their responses the estimated outstanding dues were about $182.4K (INR 1.2 Cr)
Commenting on the same, a Snapdeal spokesperson told Inc42, “Snapdeal continues to make all due payments as per contractually defined payment cycles. We work with full transparency with regard to scope of work, charges and timelines, which are mutually agreed upon. All business dealings are conducted within this framework.”
An AIOVA spokesperson said, “Some sellers will be meeting the Snapdeal team to air their grievances this week and raise the issue of clearance of payment dues. We hope (that) either the Snapdeal management or government takes these cases and clears the pending dues. We require assurance from Snapdeal or government that our money will remain in safe hands.”
Founded in February 2010, by Kunal Bahl along with Rohit Bansal, Snapdeal claims to have over 65 Mn products across 1000+ categories. Currently, it claims to have more than 300K sellers on its platform.
After news of Snapdeal layoffs was announced in February 2017, a group of online sellers reportedly asked the commerce minister Nirmala Sitharaman to intervene in the matter and safeguard their money that Snapdeal holds, in the form of outstanding dues. Later on, in March 2017, Nirmala Sitharaman, Union Minister of State, Commerce & Industry (I/C) stated that she will look into the matter and inquire into the vendors’ complaints of default payments by Snapdeal.
Last year in August 2016, AIOVA also gained the attention of Nirmala Sitharaman in AskMe matter, when enraged vendors have approached the Economic Offences Wing to register a case against the company.