YourStory in conversation with entrepreneur Gaurav Aggarwal about the business idea behind his venture Savaari, a cab rental service that is available in 53 cities across
Gaurav, what is Savaari all about?
There is a huge gap in Indian car rental market where on one hand you have quality services offered by franchises of US/Europe-based car rental companies which are highly priced and thus, affordable only to a select few while on the other you have almost all of the remaining car rental market consisting of local players which compete on prices but whose quality is always a suspect.
Savaari was founded in 2006 to fill this gap where you can get quality car rental services at nominal rates irrespective of which city in India you want to hire car rental services, thus ensuring that you get the best value for your money at all times. In the past 5 years, we have been able to prove our business and service model and currently, we are providing quality car rental services at nominal rates in 53 cities across
How is Savaari different from other online cab rental aggregators? What are your flagship differentiators?
Due to the unorganized nature of the market, there is no standardization on service standards or rates. In any given city, both can fluctuate immensely. Thus, there was need for a car rental company that can be associated with offering the best value for money to the customer in terms of the services that they get for the price that they pay. And we knew that just aggregating local transporters and their rates would not solve the problem that exists in the industry.
To build a pan
This way we not only had the local experience, but also same standards across
However, this was just the first half. The other part was to ensure that right from the point the customer gets in touch with us to the point they get billed, they interact with Savaari and its standards and in case there is any issue, it is Savaari that takes the responsibility. Even now in all our bookings, the customer sees Savaari placard, Savaari chauffeur card, Savaari duty slip and Savaari branded newspaper and water bottles. To the end customer, we are a pan
The other differentiation is that with an experience of over 30,000 car rental days, we have evolved the business and service model which is very scalable. We knew it was important to learn from one customer at a time before moving to next to build this business. The scalability is in terms of serving more customers including both retail and corporate, adding more local transporters in existing cities and adding more cities with in
How did the business idea for Savaari come about?
It was in 2006 when I was traveling from Mumbai to
Tell us about your background.
I have a Masters in Computer Science from Georgia Tech and have worked for 10 years in a networking company in the Bay area. I was involved in router development. The experience of working in such a complex environment helped me in designing a completely customized and scalable backend for Savaari from scratch. I have been managing technology, marketing and business development in Savaari. The family background of two generations of transport experience helped in evolving the business and the service model.
What is the size of the market that you’re addressing? Is there acceptance for your concept?
The car rental market in
The market is divided into airport (and also point to point) and non-airport (local full day/outstation) car rentals. While airport rental is around 14%, it is the remaining 86% that is our target market. The non-airport market is a combination of both inter/intra city and retail/corporate.
In terms of trip type, business adds up to 72% while leisure contributes about 28%. Revenue is equally divided between business and leisure. 40% of revenue is coming in from retail and remaining 60% comes in from corporate and travel partners. Going forward, revenue from business is expected to increase, to align with the market.
We have over 150 corporate customers which consist of SMEs, MNCs and travel partners including OTAs using our services. We have also seen repeat customers on the retail side and also new customers coming to us through word of mouth. The acceptance of the concept can also be seen on the backend where we have seen great support from our local transporters in helping us build and grow Savaari. With Savaari, they get business sitting in their offices and also, timely payments. The delay in payments is a big pain point in this industry.
Where do you see the online cab rental aggregator space in
While continuing to focus on quality and expanding our reach through more local transporters within existing cities and adding new cities, we plan to be
What is Savaari’s revenue model? Are you looking at raising funds?
On the front end, we provide car rental services to retail and business customers on a pan
How big is the team behind Savaari? Are you looking at hiring?
There are currently 17 employees managing operations, customer support, sales and IT including senior management team of 3. We also have 2 advisors helping us with brand and business development and 3 consultants in the team for marketing and accounting. We are currently looking for a senior software developer who can help us with optimizing and scaling our backend as well as our front end. We are also looking at hiring a senior sales person with relevant experience in retail industry to head our sales.
Let us know about your plans for expansion.
We plan to increase the number of cities where we provide our services and increase the number of local transporters in our existing cities. We are looking at completing Savaari branding in terms of drivers' uniform and the cars' exteriors on a pan
We at YourStory wish Gaurav and the entire team at Savaari much success. To try out this cab rental service, check outhttp://savaari.com/. Also, do let us know what you think of this story by writing to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.