Nowadays, everything is going the ‘app’ way – imagine a mobile app that allows customers to buy from multiple businesses and allows businesses to sell their stuff to their numerous customers – that’s Goodbox for you. Consumers can access a variety of businesses on this app. Since they can buy from multiple businesses (as opposed to buying only from one business only), chances are they will use the app often as it is more easy and user friendly. They can either buy using the menu or by messaging the respective business and then paying the business online itself –it’s that easy.
In simple term, Goodbox is:
- A Commerce-enabled messenger
- The Largest & most comprehensive booking engine in India
- A Mega app for commerce
Former redBus employees Abey Zachariah and Mayank Bidawatka came together to create Goodbox. The Co-founding team at Goodbox includes Nithin Chandra, Mohit Maheshwari, Anand Kalaginamani, Mahesh Herle and Charan Raj.
As Mayank explained the purpose behind building Goodbox, “Goodbox is a pivot from our previous business of offering content in long distance buses. We introduced an app to help passengers track their bus location while they were at their boarding point. This app had a chat functionality. We had passengers asking for help with hotels, bike rentals etc. We used to help close these requests by mediating deals with hotels. However, we realized that this model of mediation doesn’t scale. If we would hit 1000 requests on a single day it would not be feasible to mediate these discussions. Hence, the thought to create an app that would help connect consumers directly with businesses. The only way to do that is to give businesses an app presence that encapsulates their business details and to allow consumers to buy from multiple businesses on one app. Consumers are tired of downloading individual apps for businesses. You’ll notice many large brands having abysmal number of downloads. The reason is app fatigue.”
The business makes money through a SaaS model. It charges businesses a yearly fee of Rs. 999 and a payment gateway charge in case they are signed up for payments. The Goodbox team believes that the more they scale up over the years, they will get more interesting ways to monetize the network.
Funds and Expansions
Goodbox is a Series A funded company from Nexus Venture Partners to the tune of $2.5 million. The startup plans to use this funding for it’s technology expansion, market growth and expand operations to other cities in India.
As Mayank said, “We are a capital efficient company since we work on an asset light model. Hence our funding requirements are not very steep.”
The USP of Goodbox
Nobody offers businesses an app presence that connects them directly with their consumers. Most businesses have some sort of mediation built into their business model that forces them to charge businesses a heavy commission. Businesses want control and a platform like Goodbox helps them get that without any conflict of interest. The Goodbox team believe that enabling is better than trying to replace what many businesses were doing. Aggregators try to replace existing businesses whereas a business like Goodbox helps businesses plug their weak point – technology. The app help businesses start selling on it and get online at 1/100th the time and cost they would incur to do the same themselves.
This is a first of its kind and so there is no offering like Goodbox anywhere around the world yet.