Thanks to globalization, the consumer needs are rising, thereby bringing in a transformation in supply chain management process. There is a constant contradiction among the buyer and seller on where to buy and sell. Spini, a mobile app, established in 2014 in Singapore plays a significant role in providing the right platform for buyers and sellers. The Start-up spread across Chennai, Bangalore and Singapore aims to play a crucial role in connecting people with the right information at the right time. Speaking to Supportbiz, Shankar G, Co-founder & CEO of Spini, shares the company’s growth and trends in the referral industry.
SB:What are the top three trends in referral industry?
SPINI:It's industry specific – E.g. Interiors and Renovations happen predominantly through referral mechanism. Referral works very well in B2B businesses.
There are several industry specific tech solutions and startups coming up.
Businesses / individual owners have started leveraging technology to improve business in several ways. E.g. they use it for effective communication through WhatsApp groups.
SB:In the current scenario, there are many forums like BNI where the referrals happen on spot, how unique your company plays in this space?SPINI:These are smaller circles and groups where 30 people exchange leads with each other. Spini will help 30 million people exchange leads with each other. Spini leverages on the crowd, not a smaller group. This is scalable to a very large extent.
SB:What is your view on the mobile-first initiatives? Do you think, by having only app, you will reach the necessary heights?SPINI:Mobile user base is constantly increasing and there are enough stats that is convincing and encouraging to stay put with mobile only platform. According to a Cisco report, titled ‘The Cisco VNI Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast’, 2014 – 2019 released in February 2015, by 2019 there will be a rise of upto 5.2 billion global mobile users from 4.3 billion in 2014.
SB:How and where did the idea of Spini originate? Could you share a brief history of your company?SPINI:The idea of Spini started over a coffee conversation between me and Eddie Chau in a Mc Donald’s at Singapore. Both of us had complementing ideas to change and improve the current sales processes in practice. Quickly the idea was transformed into a prototype and now it has taken the shape of the app Spini.Spini aims to open up a new horizon of business opportunities for common people and salespersons. The Startup operated by a lean yet strong technology backed team spread across Chennai, Bangalore and Singapore aims to play a crucial role in connecting people with the right information at the right time.
Established in Singapore in 2014, Chennai is the first city where Spini was launched and now, has extended to entire Tamil Nadu and Bengaluru. Being a marketplace, people can post information related to a customer planning for a purchase and salesperson bid for and buy those as leads. Spini offers users with ways to make money on information they hold and helps the salesperson gain a qualified lead where his chances of closing the sale are much higher and his productivity increases.
SB:What is your vision for the company?
SPINI:We aim to continuously improve the sales process and help the sale people to be more efficient.
SB:What are your company values?
SPINI:Empowerment is the core theme.
SB:What is the revenue goal for Spini this fiscal?
SPINI:We cannot disclose revenue goals. But we anticipate to generate at least 1M leads.
SB:Name some direct and indirect competitors of Spini?SPINI:It’s a unique platform with a unique business model. We are very optimistic but at the same time cautious about the market and competition. Cannot name any one in particular.
SB:As a mobile-driven nation, India faces issues in internet connectivity. How do you tackle it?SPINI:For us the problem is not much with the connectivity speed. As long as people can make online payments that’s good for now. We do not have large files to load or process. There are lots of mobile phone users, but there is still the challenge of non-smartphone users. We will soon be setting up a telecalling system for them.
SB:Any other challenges you faced in setting up business?
SPINI:Recruiting good talent is a huge challenge. We are still looking for good candidates to fill open positions.