LocalOye aims to provide real time solutions for daily domestic problems of Indians

The online services industry has really taken off in the last 12-18 months. It is the hottest sector where technology is causing disruptions in a highly unorganized market to change the very structure of it. There are mainly two areas where the consumer is spending—buying a product or hiring a service. While the 1st part is already taken care of by some of the biggest eCommerce brands of India, LocalOye intends to own the second part—Services. In an interview with Dataquest, Aditya Rao, Founder & CEO, LocalOye, shares his ideas and perspective on how the company intends to solve the ‘real local problems’ of the society. Excerpts

How do you differentiate yourself against other eCommerce sites?

There is currently a huge customer problem which needs some serious attention. In India, a consumer spends money only for 2 things – either buying a product or hiring a service. While the 1st part is already taken care of by some of the biggest e-commerce brands of India, LocalOye intends to own the second part – Services. At present, there are classified websites which provide local vendors / service partners but they are not actually solving the real problem. While one does not need any customisation when it comes to buying products, hiring services becomes a completely different ball game. For eg: You can buy a Samsung mobile phone from any website depending on the price that you get it. But you will be sure that it is the same phone available across all portals with the given specifications. But if you need to hire a plumber, one needs to understand exactly why you need a plumber. Is it because of a broken wash, clogging problem or a piping problem? A plumber requirement of yours will be completely different from a plumber requirement of mine.

7

This is the ‘real problem’ that LocalOye intends to solve. By doing the tedious work of screening, filtering and assembling a great panel of reliable service providers; LocalOye helps you save a ton of time. Key in your requirements onto the app and then sit back and relax. LocalOye will get you options to pick from within an hour or two, based on your area, budget and preference. You also get to chat with individual merchants to further define your requirements or even with LocalOye representatives for the same. Within a matter of few clicks, you can find real time solutions for your daily domestic problems.

Who are your competitors and what challenges do you face?

Our biggest competitors would be classified websites which have done a tremendous job so far. But as mentioned earlier, we are just not a listings site which provides numbers of our merchants. What differentiates us from our competitors is the fact that, as a marketplace, we analyze the exact problem of each and every customer of ours, based on their requirements, budgets and availability. Basis the problem we recommend the ideal merchants who could solve their problems. Once a customer books a merchant through our platform, we ensure that the merchant goes to their place and finishes the job. We believe in being with our customers till the very end.

The only challenge we face is that they are established players and have been in the industry for more than 10 years now. However, we believe innovation is the one edge that LocalOye has that can help us scale up quickly.

3

How much funding have you raised? Or who are the main investors/shareholders?

We received our first round of angel investment of USD 2,00,000 from some leading angel investors like Sidharth Rao (founder of Webchutney), Haresh Chawla (investor in Housing.com, Burrp.com, Askme.com, Bookmyshow.com) who is the former Network18 CEO and Sachin Bhatia (Co-founder of MakeMyTrip.com). We also got our first round of VC funding of USD 5 million from Tiger Global Management and Lightspeed Venture Partners.

What are your future goals? How do you plan to achieve that?

The online services industry has really taken off in the last 12-18 months. It is the hottest sector where technology is causing disruptions in a highly unorganized market to change the very structure of it. LocalOye is currently offering 90 services under 6 major categories – Home Maintenance, Beauty Services, Health Services, Event Services, Education Services and Online Consultancy services. While are online consultancy services are available across every city in India, our other services are offered across Mumbai, Bangalore and NCR (Delhi & Gurgaon). Going forward we aim consolidate our position as the market leader by expanding our bouquet of services. Our focus is to crack one market by adding more and more services and then expanding geographically.

Today the eCommerce market is expanding by leaps and bounds. So what do you think will be the future of this space?

As mentioned earlier, consumers spend only on 2 thing – either they buy a product or hire someone to give them a service. If you go to see, our lives are surrounded by services. From an electricians to a yoga instructor to a wedding planner to an astrologer. These all are services which have tremendous potential to grow. Just imagine, every television sold in the country will need an electrician to either install it when it is brand new or repair it when it starts giving problems. According to industry estimates, services is easily a USD 100 billion market in India. And we have just started the journey 12 months back.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *