The Eureka Moment
It began when the founder Jayanth wanted to travel on a trip to a camp site and he was looking at a list equipment that he needed to complete his trip. It cost him almost about 1,00,000 just to get all the equipment. That is when he realised that there is a need of such a service and he could start a company which provides adventure packages to customers which comes hasslefree.
Wlend is a tech enabled platform for renting experiential products such as DSLR’s, GoPro’s, Drones & Adventure Gear. We provide customers with product experiences without having the need to buy the products.
Rent Adventure Gear @ 1% Of Its MRP
The startup is committed to solving the core problem of buying camping equipments, cameras & adventure gear which are needed for a short period of time. Customers can rent the cameras and adventure gear at 1% of its MRP rather than buying them.
“Every industry has its clutter of startups which are trying to get a part of the pie but at Wlend we believe in creating a bigger pie by pushing a new audience to try out our service” – Jayanth Neelakanta, co-founder, Wlend
From Wlend, a user could expect:
- World-class products @ 1% of its MRP
- Best service levels
- A whole lotta fun with their equipments
Currently, the venture serves about 10 orders a day and majority of the traffic comes from social media channels such as Facebook and Twitter
“We look to grow into 3 more cities by next year and make them profitable. There is no point in being in 50 cities and ending up making a loss in 45 cities. The key area of focus for us is to see our next city become a profit center and from there we can expand.” says Suraj Nayak, co-founder, Wlend
The Rules For This Game Are Yet To Be Set
The Wlend team feels that one of the important challenges is in the gaining traction for the business. As product rentals is a new concept, the venture has to address a lot of insecurities of the customers. As the customers are unsure about company’s rules in terms of how the product will be and also about the ‘What if’s” that they have in mind. The rules for this game are yet to be set and the industry is definitely growing. The venture has a large number of enquiries just asking us about damages, theft and other issues.
Jayanth Neelakanta is a PhD in Cosmology. Having studied in the US for 5 years, he is a Physicist who loves building businesses.
Suraj Naik is a Computer Science geek, having completed his Masters in IIT-Kharagpur. He loves operations and technology.
Co-founder’s Advise To Budding Online Startups?
Be small and get your product-market fit right. Look to make money from the first day. There is no point in losing investors money and growing your company. May be you are winning the game by calling yourself tech but, if you look at your bottom line revenues you’ll know what game you are in.
The Customer is King. But, you also need to know that, not all customers are same. So if you lose a few customers, it is ok. Not the end of the world. It’s always good to lose bad customers and nurture the good ones.