GrabOnReant is a marketplace where anything and everything can be leased at great deals
If you are a bachelor or a PG living in Bangalore and not quite heard of this startup, you have probably lost a nice deal. Driven by a very simple principle of providing accessibility to products to everyone, GrabOnRent is a product rental marketplace that lets its customers rent a variety of products and gets them delivered to their doorstep. The company aggregates individuals & distributed suppliers and provide a variety of selection to its customers to rent from.
For the neo Indian professionals who have to frequently change cities, deal with skyrocketing real-estate prices and carry a truckload of baggage every single time while relocating. Renting objects makes more than just economic sense. It does away with most of the burdens associated with ownership, both financial and psychological. Consider this, by choosing to rent instead of buying, one does not have to invest time, money and space to maintain and preserve the object, or, worry about having to spend a fortune to enjoy using it. In addition to this, one does not have to fear the object becoming obsolete and the investment being wasted.
It all began with. .
Personal experience led to personal growth. They were the victims of an unorganized and shady market of renting household products at the time they had hit Bangalore. They did not jump into this directly but the same repeated after one year again. Make couple of calls, inquire prices, blind-trust one of the suppliers, and ship the product to your place all by yourself. Woah! They wondered why this space is totally ignored. Are there more victims like me?
Putting things into place. .
When the idea started taking shape and they were sketching out plan of action, they had their own reservations like what will be the best Target Group, do they have to make a fully functional product or launch with quick hacks, or which categories should they consider, and a lot more. They concluded that ideas will keep flowing, but getting them executed is so much more important. With this in mind, they decided to take the plunge and launch their product with two preliminary categories in a single society with around 1100 apartments. To reach out to people, they started distributing pamphlets and surprisingly enough, they exceeded their expectations. The flow of orders coupled with feedback from the customers and guidance from industry leaders in various fields, they penned down their long term plans and effectively launched GrabOnRent in September 2015.
What and how exactly. .
One just needs to place an order like any other e-commerce platform. One can further choose the dates for one’s rental duration at convenience. Then sit back and relax. GrabOnRent at the backstage, maintains high standard of quality while collecting the product from the vendor, delivers the product to the customer’s location. They also offer free maintenance for the entire rental duration and later pick it back from the customer’s location.
In the process, the core offering to a customer by GrabOnRent is Discoverability of quality products, Quality Assurance, Convenience of payments & logistics, and most importantly Trust.
Customer speaks. .
Some of the reviews are as below:
- Poonam Gupta (name changed in the interest of privacy)
Persona – Female, aged 25-27, lives in a rented flat with 2 of her colleagues, unmarried, shifted to Bangalore on securing a new job offer, earns somewhere around INR 40,000 per month.
Order Placed – Wooden Bed & Spring Mattress, Refrigerator and Washing Machine for a 6 Months period
Story – When we inquired why she chose to rent instead of buying these products, she mentioned critical aspects that define our business. In her words, “Had I bought these products from Olx or Quikr, I would have travelled all the way to the seller’s location and ship the products to my place. I being new to Bangalore did not know much about the city and its people and hence did not want to travel to unknown places all alone. And at the time of leaving Bangalore, I would have to welcome strangers to my place to see the product I am selling and by the time I plan to, it becomes third-hand. The salvage value would not justify the efforts required.” This made total sense to us. She added, “Once I purchase a second-hand product from a seller, the responsibility of its repair comes to me, whereas GrabOnRent offers no-cost maintenance and free logistics. It was a no-brainer for me.”
- Siva Ramakrishan (name changed in the interest of privacy)
Persona – Male, aged 27-28, lives in a 1BHK rented flat, married, shifted to Bangalore on securing a new job offer with his wife, earns somewhere around INR 55,000 per month.
Order Placed – Wooden Bed & Spring Mattress, 4 Seater Dining Table, Side Table, Refrigerator and Washing Machine for a 4 Months period
Story – When we inquired the reason behind renting it from GrabOnRent, he told, “The prices at GrabOnRent were better than any of the other sites that offered similar products. The quality of the products was something I had to take a bet on, but their team surpassed my expectations of receiving refurbished products. I would highly recommend their services to my friends.” Next, we asked if had a second thought against renting and opting to buy the products directly, to which he said, “I did not want to buy everything early as I had just moved to the city. Investment upfront was a little too high. All through my search I was looking for fully-furnished flats but the prices in Indiranagar and Domlur soared too high. That is the time I came across GrabOnRent’s ad, I compared the prices of “semi-furnished house +renting” vs fully furnished house and former won hands down.
Storms they faced. .
Their main challenge has always been to get the average Indian customer to get to trust in the system and address his issues of convenience, availability and quality of products. This proves that there is a large untapped market shouting for attention. They, being one of the first movers in this space, faced the challenge of streamlining the supply and generating a steady demand side for renting of products.
GrabOnRent was founded by three young IIT Guwahati graduates – Shubham Jain, Aditya Sharma and Manish S Sugandhi. Having known each other for the last 6 years, all three of them possess complementary skills – Shubham is the big-vision person with exceptional product and marketing skills, Aditya is a techie by heart, and Manish is a methodological and innovative operations and business development person. Hence, it was an obvious choice for them to come together and start working on the idea. As a matter of fact, Manish and Shubham have been residing together in Bangalore for the last 2 years.
Manish has the experience of working with Flipkart (in their Supply Chain Management) and Aditya worked for Hewlett-Packard as a senior researcher. Shubham and Manish had also worked together earlier as founding members of Perdix Business Solutions Pvt Ltd, a design consultancy, where they handled Design and Business Development respectively. The company is now being successfully run by the other three partners. Not to wonder but the average age of the founders is nearly 25.
Experience Counts. .
The core GrabOnRent team possesses a strong team with extensive knowledge and experience in working with Marketplaces such as Flipkart, Snapdeal and Jabong; Hyperlocal Startups such as Tinyowl, Localoye and the likes, which eases their decision making.
What’s Unique. .
GrabOnRent operates with a basic principle of commission-based-model with its vendors.
None of the fellow players follow an inventory light model like them. They have ensure 100% of all the products rented out is via us a pure Marketplace play with an asset-light model. This helps them in 2 ways:
- Zero Spend on Inventory and no capital blocking
- Quick expansion into new cities.
They came up with a strong back end solution that helps us automate a lot of processes with minimal human involvement which helps them to scale rapidly without keeping the business as human intensive.
- Quality Assurance in used products – Stringent quality assurance process to live up to the ‘emotional connect’ customers hold with products. This helps us improve the ‘sticky-ness’ towards the service and gain loyalty of the vendors who witness repeat customers due to improved quality.
- Trust Engine – Vendor and Customer verification via various means (Social Profiles + ID Proof + Address Proof + UDID verification in future) to mitigate uncertainties in establishing trust between both sides.
Besides, they closed their Pre-Series A round of $450K in July, 2016 from Ivycap Ventures and Unicorn Ventures.
Talking about future. .
Upcoming plans include expansion in various geographies and strengthening the technology for an enhanced customer experience; moreover, they plan to on-board 4,000 every month from March 2017.
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