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Indore-based ShopKirana connects traditional retailers to distributors with technology

Mukti Masih
4th Sep 2015
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The life of the good old ‘kiranawala’ now becomes tech-savvy through a mobile application that connects him with sellers of various products instantly. Now he has a better control over his inventory, he can order any time and gets the delivery of goods within 24 hours.

Co-founders (left to right) Tanutejas Saraswat, Sumit Ghorawat, and Deepak Dhanotiya.
Co-founders (left to right) Tanutejas Saraswat, Sumit Ghorawat, and Deepak Dhanotiya.

Within four months of its launch in Indore, ShopKirana mobile application got 500 retailers on board with just 10 brands integrated in the system and managed a turnover of more than Rs 50 lakh of sales.

“Indian retail market is still largely (92%) unorganized. Millions of small and fragmented retailers lack technology and are plagued with supply chain inefficiencies. Even taxis today have been connected with technology aggregators but there’s this huge untapped market that struggles to survive. While studying the market, we had initially estimated 1/15 acceptance. Now seven on 10 retailers have joined us and that shows how badly this market needed it,” says ShopKirana Co-founder Tanutejas Saraswat, who looks after growth & operations.

However, it takes a personal pain point to create a startup. Another Co-founder Deepak Dhanotiya’s father runs a kirana shop in Indore. He has struggled with the problem of ordering goods as per demand, delivery and pricing for almost 15 years. “For the first time, we really saw a problem that was staring at us for so many years and we hadn’t paid attention. ShopKirana was destined to work,” shares Deepak.

ShopKirana promises convenience to the retailers through 24*7 order facility; quick inventory replenishment through 24-hour delivery and consolidation by bringing hundreds of brands at one place.

Educating retailers

ShopKirana is an Android-based mobile application that can be downloaded for free. The retailers can then look for goods they want at the moment, order through the app and pay cash at the time of delivery.

“Selling products to retailers via mobile app is just an initiative to get connected with them. Our motive is to make them aware about technology that can reduce unnecessary efforts. This helps them in generating better sales by smartly keeping less inventory, by buying in real time, by keeping track of every data on mobile and associating them with different suppliers in different service industries like banks, IT, POS system,” informs ShopKirana Co-founder Sumit Ghorawat.

ShopKirana has a team of 45+ people that go door-to-door demonstrating the benefits of the application and educating retailers about the importance of smart business system.

Along with retailers, the CPG companies and distributors have found a platform to find retailers. “ShopKirana is an end-to-end supply chain solution. Now distributors and product companies can get benefits such as POS data, trend/ forecast along with analysis of promotion, competition. They are able to time their product launches and they will know exactly where the demand is,” shares Tanutejas.

Shopkirana-Team
Shopkirana Team

ShopKirana has recently been launched in Mumbai as well. Ever since starting up in February 2015, the startup has had 15,000+ deliveries across Indore and Mumbai, sales of INR 70 lakh and have sold three lakh quantities of various goods with just 10 brands.

Founders, competitors and market

ShopKirana founders have had their own share of business schools, work and entrepreneurship apart from a common passion of bringing a difference to retailers. Tanutejas Saraswat is a Proton Business School, Indore, alumnus, and got into startups right from his college. Deepak Dhanotiya on the other hand, is passionate about innovations and supply chain management. He is a NITIE, Mumbai, alumnus, and has earlier worked for P&G and Cummins. Like him, Sumit Ghorawat, an alumnus of Carnegie Mellon University, too had worked for P&G and was part of an incubator hub in his college days. They have had Jai Kumar Nair, Vice President Operations at Mondelēz International (Cadbury’s) as their mentor.

Having worked in several sectors, ShopKirana founders are confident that their product is one-of-a-kind that is trying to organize an unorganized market. “Some companies like SAP, Neilsen focus on getting POS data with some hardware. But we feel no one is competing in empowering retailers the way we are doing,” shares Sumit.

The founders admire Steve Jobs’ philosophy: Customer don’t know until you show them what’s important. “We are going to create a dent in Indian retail universe,” says Deepak. ShopKirana is now reaching 10,000 retailers and aims at hitting 20,000 within a month.

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