Freshworks and Helpshift are changing the way global brands work with customers. JollyApp wants to do the same for India with homegrown brands.
When the younger generation joins the family business, most often, things take a different turn. While it’s important to maintain the traditional and founding culture of the business, it’s also imperative to understand why in today’s world, they need to be disruptive as well. For this, change begins with innovation.
This is what happened when a young entrepreneur noticed an opportunity while working for his family business.
This was how Jolly App, the customer service platform, came into being in July 2017.
Umesh Kumar Agarwal returned from the UK - where he studied his degree - in 2006 and began working in his family business in Kolkata, which manufactured biscuits and tea. While building the family business Umesh realised customer service was what all brands were missing in India.
Most of the brands focused on selling, so much, that they forgot to add customer experience to the top of the list. That’s when Umesh had an idea – “to wipe out all telephone calls”.
“My focus has always been on consumer demand and behaviour. I have always been passionate about how to meet consumer expectations and fulfil them to maximum limit possible. I know for a fact that, if consumers’ expectations are met, they will be loyal towards that brand. This gave me the idea of Jolly App, a platform, which will bridge the gap between the brands and its consumers,” says Umesh.
In January 2017, Umesh created a platform that makes customers free of any customer service number and can reach all brands through just one app.
Jolly App, he says, is driven by a team which has a dream and desire to bring a revolution in the customer service industry. The company was incorporated in the year 2017 under the name of Chatbot Technology Private Limited. The product is a mobile application called “JOLLYAPP” and the tag line is “An App That Does It All”
His 12-member team comprises experienced software engineers and Developers, UI/UX Designers, Digital Marketing Analysts and AI Chatbot Developers.
Jolly App is an AI-powered customer service mobile application. It is a chat-based customer assistant that helps you connect to the customer care of India’s top brands in a hassle-free manner. “Calling up customer care support for any help has always been a big pain point; in most cases you don’t have their numbers handy. Now you can connect to them simply by tapping on Jolly App,” says Umesh.
The app keeps records and manages the life cycle of the home appliance, electronics and automobiles in your home. It can assist you whenever you need help with after sales support, repairs, servicing, installations or emergency breakdowns for any of your products like ACs, washing machines, water purifiers, refrigerators, cars and bikes.
Since the app stores the details of the purchased items like date of purchase, invoice copy, warranty period, product pictures and descriptions, it intimates the desired brand’s customer service upon the touch of a button. The app connects to all the customer service centres – through APIs (that connect two networking applications) – integrated in it and solves all queries raised by the customer. It also has the option to share the details of the owned items through SMS, emails and messengers.
Jolly App can also remind the user about periodic maintenance services, warranty status and AMC renewal dates. The company works with over 60 brands in consumer durables, utility, DTH and telecommunications and allows the customers to get their service requests up-to-speed.
The app has s PRO features, which helps the customer avoid queues and speak instantly to customer care assistants. They can make a service request to the app by typing in a message and it will get the job done directly with the company’s service centre and follow up till it is completed.
Companies like Freshworks and Helpshift are the biggest players in the customer service segment. Analysts from KPMG predict that the customer service market is a $300 billion industry in the US alone with $50 billion opportunity here in India. Freshworks has an ARR $100 million. But Jolly App is vying for the Indian market with Indian brands.
Since its launch in September 2017, the app has seen 50000 downloads and is generating revenues, though the company refused to disclose the numbers. Umesh has invested more than Rs 65 lakh in the company personally, with an average of more than 5 lakh a month of ongoing investment in product development, marketing, and building the team.
The only challenge the app faces is to invest further in deep tech to make the chatbot robust to remove human intervention. Jolly App is working on recruitment for AI Chatbot software engineers/developers from other parts of India, and also trying to get mentorship from experts/professors with expertise in advanced AI, NLP and Machine Learning.
The revenue model is to charge the brands - based on the requests sent to them from consumers - which means the APIs of the brand are integrated with Jolly App. The company also provides options to buy AMCs and extended warranties directly from the company through the app for which it will earn commissions on sales.
Jolly App also allows for mobile recharge, DTH recharge, bill payments and online bus bookings, which provides high volume transitions and commissions to the company.
The market opportunity is big and hopefully this form of service will become the automated BPO of the future. It’s evident Umesh has bet on the future.