KIRANA : Making Grocery Shopping Easy

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KIRANA : Making Grocery Shopping Easy

The e-commerce start-up plans to lead the e-commerce sector in FMCG while simultaneously expanding to major cities in Nepal.

Kirana is probably the first online and on-call grocery shopping service established in Nepal, envisioning to supply everything that a customer needs every single time. Two technopreneurs - Adarsha Raj Pandey and Sagar Dev Bhatta - started Kirana as an e-commerce grocery store in 2017 with a mission to make grocery shopping convenient and accessible through the use of technology.

Currently, Kiranas offer over 12,000 different products, ranging from personal care, branded food items, and baby essentials to beverages and grocery. Likewise, the e-commerce grocery store is adding new products every day to grow its catalogue to around 20,000 products. Adarsha Raj Pandey, a co-founder of Kirana, said that his team wants to deliver everything from the grocery and general merchandise categories to the customer’s doorsteps within a reasonable time by maintaining high quality at reasonable prices. “Our aim is to create a hassle-free retail shopping ecosystem where customers can order their grocery items from home/office and get them delivered to their doorsteps,” he added.

Before starting Kirana, the duo conducted a survey of 5,000 households in Kathmandu Valley to ensure that there actually is a need for online grocery. “From this survey, we concluded that although there would be many challenges, there was an opportunity for an online grocery like Kirana,” Bhatta stated.

Likewise, Sagar Dev Bhatta, another co-founder, said they primarily wanted to solve two problems that they found after studying the survey results. “First, the number of nuclear families was growing in Kathmandu where both the husband and wife had to work. Such families have to spend precious free time shopping for groceries instead of spending quality time with their loved ones,” Bhatta said, adding:  “We wanted such families to shift to grocery shopping online to save time. We wanted to make it convenient for them by delivering their needs at home.” Likewise, the second problem that Kirana observed after the survey conducted five years ago was that homemakers were dependent on their working husbands for grocery shopping. Knowing the actual situation in the households, the e-commerce start-up concluded that it could make grocery purchases more convenient for homemakers by shifting them online. “This would make them more independent,” Bhatta said.

Adarsha Raj Pandey is an MBA graduate from the USA and has worked with multinational companies like American Express before returning to Nepal. After returning to Nepal, Pandey worked in product development as the vice president of an American company. During that period, Pandey and his team were able to successfully create licensed software to process payments from the US to the rest of the world. Pandey currently is on the board of Leapfrog Technology Nepal and Muktinath Capital.

Similarly, Sagar Dev Bhatta, an undergraduate in Electronics and Communication Engineering (Dean’s List) and an MBA graduate in Management of Science and Systems, is a result-oriented IT professional with hands-on experience in building best-in-breed systems. Bhatta has more than seven years of experience in establishing tech and fin-tech startups and is best suited as a person to groom and lead a startup during its inception and growth phase. So far, he has established three tech-based start-ups. He worked as the director of operation at Machnet Technologies Inc and held a senior managerial position at Leapfrog Technology for nearly four years. He is also the chief of product at FleetPanda (a Silicon Valley-based company).

Key Business Principles
Kirana focuses on free and express delivery, quality service, quality product, affordability, convenience and easy return as the key pillars of its business. “We do not charge any extra fee. Also, we deliver products ordered before 9:30 am on the same day,” Pandey added. Likewise, Bhatta said that his team takes care of the customers and their needs by ensuring that the service process is seamless. Kirana makes sure that the products reaching customers' houses are of the best quality. “We inspect the details of products before delivering them to our customers. They have the right to reject our product,” Pandey assured. Likewise, the start-up gives its customers the option to choose the date and time for delivery. If customers are not satisfied with the product delivered, they can schedule to return it easily by calling us for a full refund or exchange, Bhatta shared.

Kirana’s service is currently limited to Kathmandu Valley right now. However, the start-up plans to extend its service across Nepal in the future. Currently, the e-commerce start-up is associated with over 500 vendors and is almost associated with all the top brands in the fast moving consumer foods industry.

“Customers can order from Kirana by visiting its webpage - - or by downloading the App from Google Play Store and Apple App Store. Customers can also call Kirana at 01-4511000 to place orders,” said Pandey. Kirana plans to lead the e-commerce sector in FMCG while simultaneously expanding to major cities in Nepal. To figure of consumers' need, deliver goods as per their need and provide them with attractive cashback is Kirana’s focal point for the present as well as the future, according to the co-founders. Pandey describes that Kirana's service is to cater for homemakers, who usually shop for groceries and busy professionals who want to shift to shopping online so that they can save time. Likewise, according to Bhatta, Kiarana is different from other e-commerce portals in Nepal. We focus only on grocery and general merchandise like shampoo, detergents etc, he added. In terms of investment, Kirana had to inject capital in the past. The founders anticipate that since Kirana is undergoing through a high growth phase, more capital will be required in the future to grow rapidly.

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