With over 10,000 B2C and B2B clients, this on-demand storage startup promises to keep your valuables safe
One of the main worries for most of us when we plan a long holiday is how to safeguard our household valuables, automobiles, documents, etc.
Bengaluru-basedis looking to solve this problem by providing storage management solutions ranging from household storage (appliances, kitchen utensils, furniture), business storage (B2B), document storage, and tape vaulting.
The on-demand storage startup was founded in 2015 by former IBM colleagues Ramesh Babu Madisetty, Venu Madhav Maidam, and Nageswar Midam after they faced difficulties themselves when they had to travel.
“Several people face the issue of storing and safeguarding their household items when they are away from home. In case people on rent need to be away for a long time, they need to keep on paying the rent in order to keep their belongings safe. If they want to save on rent, they have to shift the goods to their hometown or sell it off at a cheaper price,” Ramesh tells YourStory.
Image Credit: Safe Storage
One-stop destination for storage needs
Ramesh says Safe Storage is looking to become a one-stop destination for people’s storage needs. He adds that their warehouses are equipped with facilities such as smoke detectors, 24X7 dedicated security, CCTV monitoring, barcode assisted inventory management system, biometric security system, and pest safe premises to keep the goods safe.
To ensure safety, the startup also provides insurance against fire, theft, and natural calamities for no extra charges.
Ramesh says the startup offers packing, pickup, and delivery of the goods. The customers will get quotations through the website and can book a slot for pickup and will only need to pay for the space they use with customised and flexible pricing plans. Users are to store their goods for at least one month.
"Once all the goods are moved to the warehouse, we will generate a unique barcode for each item along with your name and date, so that these items won't mix with other customer goods. We take stacking pictures of your goods and upload in the customer portal," he says.
Safe Storage was first started in a one BHK house in Bengaluru. The startup has now grown to have over 5 lakh sq. ft storage space. The software used - including automated quotation and booking process, work order management, and customer portal, is customised by the in-house tech team comprising of 12 members.
The startup has over 30 warehouses in Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Pune, and Chennai. Safe Storage claims to have over 10,000 B2C and B2B clients such as HCL, Infinite, Siemens, NTT Data, and Therapiva, among others.
Illustration: YS Design
Business strategy and growth plans
Speaking about the business model, Ramesh says that charges completely depend on the volume of items being stored.
Storage of 1BHK worth household goods for a month can cost Rs 2,999 while for 2BHK goods, they charge Rs 3,999. Users can store documents and records in boxes where per box is priced at Rs 15. Ramesh reveals that Safe Storage recorded Rs 15.88 crore turnover in FY2020-21.
B2B clients, however, need to pay per pallet at a starting price of Rs 800. Apart from this, tape vaulting for server storage is priced at Rs 20 per tape.
The founder adds that the bootstrapped startup is looking for external funds for business expansion. Apart from this, the on-demand storage company is also looking to convert its extra storage space into a co-working space as some of the warehouses are located in Whitefield which is surrounded by many IT companies.
"We have one lakh sq. ft space in Hoodi, Bengaluru, which we will be turning into a co-working space soon,” Ramesh says.
The startup is also looking to expand to 10 cities over the next few years and also launch packers and movers service. It is looking to launch its services in Mumbai and Kolkata by April this year.
COVID-19 impact and rise of on-demand storage needs
Ramesh explains that COVID-19 led lockdowns, work from home, and salary cuts led several employees to return back to their hometowns, leading to increased demand for storing their household items.
According to the co-founder, while Safe Storage saw no business amid lockdown, it saw a sudden increase in demand from May 2020.
“We have acquired 8,000 clients in the last eight months and have grown to over 5 Lakh sqft space from 1.4 Lakh sq. ft before COVID-19,” Ramesh adds.
According to Research and Markets, the global self-storage market was valued at $87.65 billion in 2019 and is expected to reach $115.62 billion by 2025, registering a CAGR of 134.79 percent between 2020 and 2025.
Other notable players such as, , Storagians, and Your Space Doctor among others are also looking at increased demand for storage amid COVID-19. However, the founder believes that Safe Storage has the largest warehouse than any other competitor in India. He believes that no other players have crossed two lakh sq. ft warehousing space.
Ramesh had earlier said that on-demand storage was a new concept in India until very recently. However, the pandemic has proved to be a tailwind for this sector. “Of late, we have received 2,800+ leads in a single day and we have done 60+ pickups in a day,” he adds.
With the sector looking at a steady growth, Safe Storage is looking to tap into the growing market and claim the top position in the sector.