Naina KhedekarJul 14, 2016 14:14:16 IST
In the race for digitisation, brick and mortar stores could be left behind. But there are startups striving to bring them on the digital platform. After Tarnea, we spoke to Distiman. The Distiman app allows your mom and pop or popularly known as kirana stores to maximise profits through on-demand procurement of stock. Distiman went live four months ago and is operational in Mumbai and Mysore. It has more than 3000 retailers and over 1500 products.
Arun Narayan, Chief Growth Officer at Distiman and veteran known for three earlier start-ups tells us, “We were already been in this space with our supply chain automation and intelligence product, Bizom, and were already automating the sales teams and supply chain of more than 160 brands like ParleAgro, Bisleri, Cargill, Hershey’s etc. Distiman was a natural forward integration. Once we decided to empower the retailers with our technology, it became clear to us that the best way in which our technology could help them is by helping them stock right.”
So, in the traditional setup, a kirana store owner has to wait for roughly one to two weeks or even longer to get the delivery of the stock. This leads to calling in stock in larger quantities, which may end up with his capital stuck for that period of time, Narayan explains. The Distiman app lets a retailer order products and get the delivery of the stock within 24 hours. This means cash rotation and correct stock. “All these factors allow retailers to make approximately 2x profits when they use Distiman,” he adds.
On the other hand, it allows brands to increase their reach. It also offers brands analytics, helping distributors stock better and optimize the supply chain. “This means that multiple brands, irrespective of their size, will now have massive reach across India through this single platform and even a fairly new brand will now be able to sell in the same areas. Finally, brands also derive great value from the rich data that we generate from retailers and across the supply chain ecosystem,” explains Narayan.
Talking about what sets Distiman apart from others, he said, “We have already built technology that crunches vast amounts of supply chain and retail consumption data to provide intelligent predictions on right stocking for everyone in the supply chain, including distributors and retailers. This greatly drives up the capital efficiency of these businesses. Plus, we are an ecosystem player. We are leveraging our existing relationships with more than 160 brands with reach to more than 10,000 distributors and more than a million retailers pan India.”
Distiman wants to upgrade small retailers and distributors with technology and brand mix and give them increased demand and control over supply. It is an 85 member team led by CEO and Founder, Lalit Bhise. He has invented hybrid mobile programming, and has a patent in visual merchandising using image recognition. With a track record of more than 150 products built over 17 years, Lalit knows Indian FMCG in and out.
It was one of the 12 startups selected by Microsoft Ventures for their Accelerator program, and recognised as one of the 3 ‘high potential’ startups among the 12. The startup is funded by Ojas Venture. It makes money by taking a cut in the margins on the stocks delivered via their supply channels, and also via per-user pricing from selling the Bizom product.
Currently, the company is perfecting their operational model in Mysore and Mumbai. They are also simultaneously raising series-A round of investment, which will help scale rapidly to other cities.
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