According to the report by the Global Industry Analysts, the worldwide office writing and marking instrument market is expected to reach almost $22 Billion by the year 2017, with paper based products holding the key share. The growth is expected to be powered by the demands from Middle East, Latin America and Asia-Pacific region of the world.
One new niche eTailer is Kobster.com, an online “one stop shop” for the office supply needs of Indian corporate. By focusing on a specialty market that has seen, and is guaranteed to see, increasing demand in the upcoming years, Kobster.com has become one of India’s hot ecommerce start-ups. Customers include Freshdesk, inLogic, ArrayShield and many more. Chennai businesses constitute their first major focus.
With product categories ranging from quintessential office supplies to cleaning supplies, vending machines, furniture and customizable printed products, Kobster.com has positioned itself as the Staples of India.
Offering flexible payment options such as cash on delivery, net banking and 21 days of credit for corporations, Kobster.com accommodates all levels of customer needs. They even offer free shipping on certain purchases.
The Chennai based venture Kobster.com is an ecommerce website started by three college batch mates from SRM University. Kobster.com was born from the absence of an organized and established office supplies brand in the market. Kobster.com aims to be one stop shop for all stationery and office supply needs. It was launched on Sep 2012.
The idea behind Kobster
Kobster.com was launched by Vineet Neeraj, Karthik Ramaiah and Mohan Gayam, three college school chums from SRM University.
After knowing each other for over seven years and having worked together on college projects, Vineet, Karthik and Mohan Gayam launched Kobster.com. Each founder manages a different aspect of the business: Vineet watches over marketing and sales, Karthik manages the technical aspects along with customer support and Mohan strengthens their product catalogue, ensuring the best deals from suppliers.
Before launching in September of 2012, Karthik worked at Cognizant and Mohan at HCL Technologies. Vineet, on the other hand, is no stranger to the start-up world. He launched his first start-up, Yippie, providing event services, before switching to a product start-up, ArrayShield, based out of Chennai.
The office supply market is currently unorganized in India with emergence of no key player. Kobster is looking to simplify the process by cutting the middleman and the need to manage multiple vendors for the products by sourcing all their products from them. Kobster maintains an inventory of the fastest selling products and provides a credit account policy where the enterprises can apply for credit on their purchases for 7-21 days (though this feature is currently limited to Chennai only).
Soon they will be launching an e-procurement software which will be tightly integrated with Kobster website. The idea would be to make the entire purchase as transparent as possible for the corporations. By having an approval process in place within the company between the administration and management, all the purchases would be forwarded to Kobster.