Last January, Google and KPMG conducted a study titled ‘Impact of Digitisation on SMBs in India’. It presented a gloomy picture of Small and Medium businesses (SMBs) in the country, highlighting that a staggering 68 per cent of SMBs in India are offline.
Besides, Indian SMBs that do engage with digital technologies are still not using the full potential of it. In the SMB sector pyramid, it was found that only 2 per cent were in the Engaged tier. The rest 30 per cent were in the Connected and Enabled tiers, meaning that they do not actively sell or promote their business online, unlike the Engaged.
Despite the current state of things, experts say that the next online revolution is impending in the SMB sector.
Akash Nangia, Co-founder and CEO, TechJockey, sees a “silver lining in the numbers”.
“Of approximately 300 million SMBs, if even a small percentage decide to digitise the business, it opens a huge market for software solutions providers,” Nangia said, wondering whether any platform exists that could provide SMBs with wholesome solutions for digitisation.
The solutions provider
Back in 2010, Nangia, one of the founding members of Zomato, while working as the vice-president of corporate sales in the company, closely observed the increasing demand for technology among smaller businesses.
Two years later, after quitting Zomato, in an attempt to explore this opportunity, he launched SISL Infotech, an IT system integrator and reseller that helped address IT sourcing challenges and software licencing needs with solutions and managed services.
In 2016, with his friend Arjun Mittal, he expanded the idea further into TechJockey, an e-commerce platform selling a wide range of software solutions to startups, SMEs, MSMEs, corporates, and even individuals.
In simple terms, it can be called the ‘Flipkart of software solutions’.
Since its inception, the company has reportedly grown manifold with the help of vendors and resellers on its platform.
Evidently, the company has clocked yearly sales of Rs 8 crore in the fiscal ending March 2018. In the fiscal year 2017, the company made a turnover of Rs 3.5 crore.
Interestingly, he has been able to achieve the numbers without raking in huge investments. The platform is still bootstrapped and claims to have done well only through product quality which has drawn a huge traffic.
TechJockey has over 3,000 products listed across industries like retail, e-commerce, ITES, hospitality, healthcare, education and others. The platform sells products from 100 categories and fulfils the requirement of more than 2,100 small and medium businesses.
It has partnered with over 1,200 software vendors such as Microsoft, Tally, Sophos, Greytip HR, Spine Technologies as well as small vendors from tier 2 and tier 3 cities.
Smaller cities bring larger biz
Businesses from smaller cities are not as idle as before and are fast adapting to the changing environment. They face challenges in making an online presence, integrating payments solutions if already online, or by buying different software solutions to manage the business.
Nangia informs that between 65 and 70 per cent of buyers on the platform come from tier 2 and 3 cities such as Gorakhpur, Hisar, Alwar and others.
Seeing the huge growth in smaller cities, TechJockey is boarding resellers – local software sellers who source the software from the platform and supply it to individuals and retailers in these cities. The resellers work with TechJockey on commission basis.
The blueprint for growth
The platform has been fast expanding its business scope, trying to tap into the market’s potential at its maximum.
Conventional marketing, and onboarding around 650 resellers from the telecom sector, who will further sell the company’s products to individual buyers and retailers in those cities, are TechJockey’s means to achieve the target.
The company plans to increase the number of transactions per month from 100 to 500 by December-end this year and the number of visitors from 40,000 per month to 1,00,000 per month.
“We aim to utilise the first-mover’s advantage in this sector. We want to explore all the means to reach a certain position where it would be extremely difficult for any new platform to replicate the model and build another TechJockey,” said Nangia.