Printivo: on demand printing service for West Africa
Imagine you are travelling to Lagos for business. When you reach there you realize you are short of visiting cards in a new city. Or if you are a local, you realize a few days before your wedding that you suddenly need another 100 invitation cards. What do you do? Don’t worry. The founders of Printivo have a solution.
Printivo.com is a Lagos-based DIY (do it yourself) web-to-print-to-doorstep platform. This startup is trying to redefine the digital printing business in Nigeria by offering consumers and SMEs a radically easy and practical model for meeting their printing requirements. The startup helps SMEs by printing and delivering materials such as point-of-sale displays, business cards, letterheads, stickers, handbills, greeting cards, calendars, envelopes, invitation cards and banners, right to the customer’s doorstep.
Printivo was co-founded in Nigeria by Oluyomi Ojo, Ayodeji Adeogun and Ibukun Oloyede. YourStoryAfrica spoke to the serial entrepreneur Oluyomi Ojo to record his journey leading up to Printivo.
Since he was 18 years old, Ojo has been an entrepreneur. Before founding Printivo.com, he was running a design and branding agency called Urbanbaze in Lagos. He has experience of working with reputable brands like Etisalat, Honda, Pfizer, Kuramo, Alabukun and Asoil energy; helping them with design, branding and marketing communications. The ad agency is still running simultaneously but under a different management.
‘How I met my co-founders’
Ojo met his two co-founders while he was pursuing his previous venture. Ibukun joined him as a graphic design intern at Urbanbaze ad agency in 2009 and grew to be the Art Director in four years. Now Ibukun is his co-founder at Printivo.
Once Ojo needed help in GIS related stuff for Urbanbaze and went to the University of Lagos to meet a professor in the field, and instead bumped into an old acquaintance, Ayodeji Adeogun. They struck a deal then and there and Ayodeji came on board to Urbanbaze. Now he is as a co-founder of Printivo.
“Doing small things in great ways is the only business model that has worked for me,” says Ojo. According to him, “This one-stop online print-shop offers high end personalized products such as calendars, posters, photobook, diaries, large prints on paper and canvas etc. Printivo has a very interactive drag-and-drop online interface where customers can choose and customize from hundreds of templates to create business cards, brochures, posters, personal diaries, photo books and invitations. This personalized product approach helps customers reduce printing time and costs, while increasing choice.”
Ojo says he observed a market need that was not served well locally. He saw people ordering cards on Moo.com (UK-based printing service) and wait for 26 days for delivery. Surprisingly, Moo’s Nigerian traffic accounts for 0.8% of their overall site visits.
Printivo founder Ojo feels that the West Africa printing industry is hugely unorganized, and the customer is under-served in terms of quality and reliability. Printivo’s vision is to make printing accessible and hassle free starting from Lagos to other cities and eventually establishing outlets across the West African region.
Services like Printivo which provide a local solution for a local problem are the need of the hour in Africa. Nigeria has a lot of designers who were not accessible to customers before, now thanks to Printivo they have a platform where they can congregate and offer their art to customers. Designers across Nigeria are becoming mini-entrepreneurs, working with the Printivo team to build the largest database of customizable templates of business cards, letterheads and other printing products for customers.
With a modern store design, well trained staff and cutting-edge equipment, Printivo is Nigeria’s number one online print provider. Born out of love for paper and ink, Printivo aims to help Nigerian startups and SMEs print business and marketing materials with ease. They believe your business should not start and end on the internet. According to Ojo, “Printivo has made printing easy for both businesses and individuals. Our templates are free for everyone to customize and use. We are empowering people to create their own marketing materials, this is our contribution to the Nigerian entrepreneurial drive.”
Printivo handles its own logistics and delivery for Lagos. For out station cities, it has local partners. Its consumer-driven experience comes as a novel concept in the Nigerian printing industry.
Challenges to overcome
The challenge for Printivo is to prove product-market fit very quickly then achieve scalability and efficiency without any compromise on their quality of services.
Raise funds from people who not only bring in money but also human capital with right connections for expansion.
Decrease the delivery time from maximum three days in Lagos and five days outside Lagos, to one day in Lagos and three days for outstation.