"We are looking to change the way e-commerce is done in India by developing more tools and technologies for our stakeholders".
--Krishna Lakamsani, CEO, IPay
"E-commerce is the way to go. Consumers in India are different from consumers in any other country. Here, we depend on personal relationships and trust people rather than virtual entities", says Krishna Lakamsani, CEO of IPay, a company that is helping combat this very challenge, currently being faced by Indian e-merchants.
The organization has launched IPay that is re-inventing the way Indian e-merchants approach their e-commerce businesses. A bridge between consumers, who are wary of making online purchases and e-merchants keen to sell their products, IPay leverages the local kirana store to scale the ‘trust'.
The innovative ‘Business-in-a-Box' kiosk, seeks to empower the common man in India to consume e-commerce through local IPay cash points.
Using the kirana shop, consumers can access thousands of products available online. The local kirana, meanwhile, using IPay, can sell a vast range of products that it does not have. "In this way, through our business model, customers interact with trusted sellers, they are comfortable paying to, and kirana shops add to their revenue stream by selling products they do not have on their shelves", he adds.
The technology platform, which took seven months and 20 iterations to build, has been integrated with more than 50 merchant outlets along with their inventory, which includes physical merchandise.
The merchants meanwhile, include companies - selling their products and services online. The platform is integrated with all mobile operators, DTH operators, bus ticket/flight/hotel inventory aggregators, manufacturers and large distributors, among others.
"In a short span of a year, our hybrid e-commerce marketplace has registered more than one 2.4 million transactions, worth over INR 23 crore. Using IPay, the 700 kirana stores in Hyderabad have also upgraded themselves, becoming high tech retailers within their neighborhoods and increasing their revenues by 20-22 percent!"
Looking ahead, the company hopes to do around USD 1 billion worth of business. "We are acquiring a new customer every 15 seconds. Around 1.2 million customers have walked into kirana stores and purchased products and services using IPay. Starting April 2015, we intend to take IPay to Karnataka and Tamil Nadu as well and expand our base of retailers from 700 in and around Hyderabad to 1.5 lakh across the country.