Startup Sunday || Season 4 Episode 20 || DonateKart

“It’s hard to make things right for everyone.”
“But if everybody helped just one person, lots of people would get helped.”

-Linwood Barclay

Despite being motivated by quotes like these which glorify the act of charity, how many times have you backed out of the giving due to lack of convenience?

How many times have you come across an NGO and wanted to help them out, but hesitated due to the lack of transparency of the process?

the reasons which affected your confidence in trusting the organization might be any one of the following-

1) Strong distrust in the organization due to lack of transparency & accountability

2) Lack of convenience in carrying out the deliverance of charity

3) Inability in the determination of how the funds are utilized

4) Inefficient impact resulting in only 60-70% of funds reaching the end beneficiary

1

The plausible solution to this issue is Donatekart, which is a return to the traditional Indian way of giving, using the marvels of technology. Where they have started making people ‘donate in-kind’ again, with the help of concepts like crowdfunding and e-commerce.

Donatekart is a social enterprise that allows individuals to donate supplies needed to a charity instead of donating money. The organization was established in 2016 by Anil Kumar Reddy and Sandeep Sharma. Donatekart is primarily an online crowdsourcing platform that assists non-governmental organizations to create campaigns and collect products they require from donors instead of traditional monetary donations. Donatekart is the first of its kind in the world that enables donors and philanthropists to directly donate required products to charitable organizations online instead of money.

Donatekart is incubated by Zone Start-ups India, an accelerator program run by Bombay Stock Exchange, Mumbai and T-Hub, Hyderabad. They focus on catering to the needs of both donors and NGOs, for the former, it is transparency and convenience.

2

The amazing story of Donatekart

The birth of this online crowdsourcing platform dates back to 2015 when Mr. Anil Reddy, one of the founders was volunteering for a Goonj relief camp during the Chennai floods. The finding that there is a mismatch between the victims’ requirement and what they received from donors became the trigger point of this organisations’ inception. He also noticed how people were using e-commerce sites like Amazon and Flipkart to buy rice and groceries and were sending them to the NGO’s collection centres.

Anil, then an undergrad student at NIT Nagpur, was entrusted with the delivery and distribution of relief packages to the flood victims. There was no dearth of donors, who would generously give food, water, and clothing, but the victims were in desperate need of things like tarpaulins, mosquito repellents, blankets, bleaching powder, medicines, and so on. Anil realised that NGOs (like Goonj and several others) that organised these relief camps did not get the desired products because donors were largely unaware of the specific needs of an area or a calamity. The founders discovered this was one of the pain-points that need to be addressed to ensure the intended success. They created Donatekart to serve as a bridge connecting the needs of the beneficiary and the benefactor while ensuring transparency in transactions.

The idea of Donatekart, rooted in Nagpur but soon shifted its base to Mumbai, where several large and small NGOs are headquartered.

5

What is Donatekart all about?

At Donatekart, they are on a mission to provide a transparent online donation platform for Indians to give. They primarily focussed on building a platform where Donors can donate in-kind to charities instead of money thus bringing transparency. Consider an orphanage launching a campaign on Donatekart where they list items like notebooks, school bags, uniforms, etc. Donors who wish to contribute can easily browse this list, and similar to online shopping, they can shop for the NGO by paying for these products. Donatekart will then deliver these items to the NGO, who can then send updates with photos and videos of distribution.

With leveraging technology and people’s acquaintance using eCommerce sites, Donatekart brings an Indian way of giving to social causes online. The start-up updates the donors on product utilization and keeps them engaged with the organization.

How is Donatekart impacting lives?

Since inception, Donatekart has worked with 800+ NGOs from all over India, across various sectors and hosted nearly 350 campaigns on its platform. 75000 unique donors channelized 10 lakhs products worth Rs 10 Crores across major Indian cities, and even difficult areas like tribal Maharashtra, Jammu and Kashmir, and the northeast. One of the biggest and commendable projects of the firm includes its service during the devastating Kerala floods of 2018 where they raised two crores worth of products.

Many organisations have done multiple campaigns on a monthly or quarterly basis, which clearly shows the value this company brings to them as a platform.

What is the revenue model of Donatekart?

Hundred percent of the products donated via Donatekart go to the NGOs. They generate their revenue from the vendors from whom they buy the products. Since they purchase in bulk, they always leverage on the wholesale value of the purchase, thus sustaining the business without taking fees to run a campaign or make a donation.

Accolades

The influence this organization bestowed on the chiefly unorganized philanthropy sector is evident from the awards they received. Donatekart was awarded NASSCOM Social Innovation Award 2018 by K. T. Rama Rao, Minister for Information Technology, during World Conference on Information Technology held in 2019, in Hyderabad. They were even invited to the United States by Bill Gates and Melinda Gates Foundation to be part of the Greater Giving Summit as a recognition of the good work they have done. They won the best social Enterprise award from action for India.

What’s the future plan for Donatekart?

The vision for Donatekart is to see every Indian contributing at least 2% of their income for social causes. Currently, only 28% of people contribute to charities in India, which is quite less when compared to other countries. Bain India Philanthropy report states that the lack of transparency is hindering the growth of giving population and we at Donatekart are trying to solve the same issue to achieve its vision. To make this happen there is a requirement to promote a lot of individual campaigns i.e. mobilizing individuals to launch campaigns on their special days like birthdays, anniversaries to support charities/social causes. Also, Many NRIs/PIOs would love to give back to the community or village they are from, which can be done using crowdfunding.

3

The world would be a better place if more of us can join the path of sharing and caring. Being a facilitator in this deed is no less than the benefactor. In this world where everything is driven by the thought of “What’s in it for me?”, we need more and more people to willingly share a part of the favors bestowed upon them. Only this can make us truly humane and hence build a better tomorrow.

 

Written By-

Priyabrata Saha (PGDM C) & Ajmi Fathima (PGDM BFS)
Batch: 2019-2021

StartUp Sunday || Season 4 Episode 16 || KStar

“Everyone has their right time sooner or later but this time we had someone whos right time came at the age of 13”

Remember what our struggles were when we were 16, worrying about the massive syllabus for boards, for Kunal Chandiramani, he has got a lot more to worry about. When everyone was stuck with Biology he was stuck with the coding of his E-commerce website. Kunal believes that “All we need to do is to break that dogma, How can I change more lives – How can I transform peoples living, so change lives and then earn Dollars, do both but start with changing lives.” He is also the best selling author for his book “Know it works before it actually works: How to find your good Idea.”
This week we were lucky enough to interview Kunal about his first StartUp KStar.

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StartUp Sunday || Season 4 Episode 15 || Eat My News

The world in which we live in, changes and transformation are the only constants. With globalization and liberalization setting in with the full flow, the competition has become cutthroat and fierce. In order to help our new generation, become ready for this transformation, Eat My News has come up with a disruptive solution. It provides a platform where people can upskill themselves with skill development workshops, attend youth leadership conferences and moreover, learn from the industry experts and develop skill sets that can make them industry ready.

EatMyNews_logo_300dpi-(2) Continue reading “StartUp Sunday || Season 4 Episode 15 || Eat My News”

Startup Sunday || Season 4 Episode 7 || Skill Prodigy

“Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty” – Henry Ford

What is ‘Skill Prodigy’?

Many students and professionals despite their academic brilliance miss out on bagging their dream jobs. Almost every time the reason is an interview gone wrong. Skill prodigy bridges the gap between knowledge and presentation. Skill prodigy is an app with a user-friendly interface that helps you prepare for interviews. Videos and other tools are applied to give the user a realistic experience. It is backed by dedicated mentors, and it employs the practice of peer reviews.

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What is the story behind the inception of ‘Skill Prodigy’?

As mentioned earlier, the reason behind a failed interview was known. But the students didn’t have any proper means to rectify. A problem presented itself and we had the solution, we simply realized it.

 

What business model does ‘Skill Prodigy’ employ?

prodigy

 

Target market:

  • B2C – Students and professionals with less than three of experience
  • B2B – Universities, corporates, and technical training providing institutes

Value proposition:

  • Customized in-app training for interviews, group discussion, CV analysis along with personal mentorship
  • Specialized offline training like accent training

Revenue sources:

  • In-app purchases
  • Workshops in universities
  • Partnership with other technical training providers
  • A licensed model with universities and corporates is in the pipeline

What were the challenges faced during the launch?

  • Finding qualified mentors who believed in our cause. They are the cornerstone of the company, without whom it would be a business with hollow values.
  • The product was bootstrapped by the co-founders. This placed a few restricted on the capital expenditure, forcing us to focus on high valued investments while having a frugal investment strategy.
  • Access to decision-makers in universities was minimal in the beginning

How is your company causing ripples in the e-learning market?

It is a bloodbath with multiple players aiming for the same consumer segment. Creating strong brand awareness in this crowded market is challenging. Having a strong value proposition is what differentiates us. Customer retention is key.

Why ‘Skill Prodigy’ and not other apps?

‘Skill Prodigy’ is a one shop stop. Even though the medium is an app, our human element is our strongest element owing to our dedicated mentors. Its ease of use and economic feasibility make it a true digital pocket partner. It focuses only on communication and covers all aspects of it.

What are your plans for the ‘e’ part of the ‘e-learning’?

At present, the app is available for Android OS. We will soon be launching it for iOS.

Explain to us the expansion and scaling plans set in store?

  • Short term plan: Work on brand awareness. We want our presence in tier two and tier three cities pan India.
  • Later build on brand presence with the help of an extensive user base.
  • Make ‘Skill Prodigy’ a global brand

One of the biggest hurdles for a start-up is funding. What about ‘Skill Prodigy’?

Co-founders have been bootstrapping it until now. We are focusing on friends and angel investors who are interested in small-ticket items. Since the company is only five months old, we are not approaching venture capitalists and other big fishes as of now.

Since the company is in its initial stages, it is turbulence max now. How are you managing it?

It is not a cakewalk, situations are very volatile. Our goal ‘To make every individual in India a great communicator’ is what drives us.

What are the main factors to be kept in mind while building a start-up?

  • Rock-solid team – Start-up is a pipe dream without it. Each member’s drive and effort is the pillar of a start-up.
  • Execution plan. Even the most brilliant ideas are meaningless without a proper plan to realize it.
  • Your gut is seldom wrong. But at the same time consensus is important.
  • Try to build symbiotic relationships.
  • Nothing can replace research.
  • Start small. Test your market and then improvise.
  • Reach out to your gurus for guidance.

Startup Sunday || Season 4 Episode 02 || Sava100Crore

Seth Godin once said that marketing is no longer about the stuff you make but the stories you tell.  In the ongoing digital transformation, Video is an effective form of communication that needs to be integrated into each and every aspect of your existing marketing efforts.

In this episode of startup sunday, we interact with Mr Paritosh Sharma from Sava100Crore, a business channel that helps SME business owners in India to grow their business. Prior to co-founding Sava100Crore, Paritosh has worked with startups like Jabong, Hike, PayU etc. Following is the excerpt from the conversation:

11 Continue reading “Startup Sunday || Season 4 Episode 02 || Sava100Crore”

Startup Sunday || Season 3 Episode 36 || Delhivery

Most of the startups are built with the intention of problem-solving and making the lives of people easier. One of the aptest examples of this is “Delhivery”. In an interview, Sahil Barua, one of the 5 co-founders of Delhivery said: “We had worked extensively in the telecom sector and over the years we realized that internet is going to revolutionize how businesses would be done”. In one of the incidents where Sahil wanted a book to be delivered to one of his friends Suraj, also a co-founder, who lived across the street, through a courier service, both of them realized inefficiencies in the system when the courier service provider charged them Rs. 350 and took 2 days to deliver which they couldn’t understand “why?”. In order to solve this problem, they came up with “Delhivery”.

delhivery logo

Delhivery is a Delhi based startup that helps merchants and brands create successful online businesses by providing E-Commerce technology and core logistics support.

Continue reading “Startup Sunday || Season 3 Episode 36 || Delhivery”

Startup Sunday || Season 3 Episode 32 || New E-Commerce Policy of India

“We will continue to see a convergence of the digital world and physical world. Those who conquer that trend would be market leaders.” – John Phillips, Pepsico Inc

In this episode of Startup Sunday, The Entrepreneurship Cell brings to you insights on the newly formed E-Commerce policy of India which came into force from February 2019.

E-Commerce_inventory-management

 

Continue reading “Startup Sunday || Season 3 Episode 32 || New E-Commerce Policy of India”

Startup Sunday || Season 3 Episode 22 || Nykaa! One stop beauty destination

1The French designer Yves Saint Laurent nailed it when he said, “The most beautiful makeup of a woman is passion. But cosmetics are easier to buy”. This is especially apt in today’s day and age where the ever-helpful e-commerce businesses are putting everything a consumer needs online and giving it to them with hefty discounts.

For every girl, be it a college student or a working woman, her one-stop beauty destination is NYKAA! Launched just in 2012 by Falguni Nayar, an alumnus of IIM Ahmedabad, Nykaa is currently valued at INR 3000 Cr. Let’s delve into the entrepreneurial journey of Ms. Nayar, and see how the Company has managed to achieve breakeven EBITDA and a valuation of INR 3000 Cr in a span of 7 years

1536157033-1315

Continue reading “Startup Sunday || Season 3 Episode 22 || Nykaa! One stop beauty destination”

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