Andhra Pradesh: Two young engineers from Mandasa, a small town in Srikakulam district, like several others lost their jobs due to COVID-19 and returned to their town during lockdown, but they did not wait for the good days to come. In fact, they took the pandemic as an opportunity to devise their own way to survive.
A Rupesh, a civil engineer, who worked for a construction company in Kolkata, and Y Dhilli Rao, who worked as a robotic engineer in a Delhi-based company, turned the COVID-19 crisis into an opportunity.
“We returned to the town in April and remained idle till September-end. The town was under total lockdown for more than a month and the partial lockdown is still in force. As people are forced to stay at home during the lockdown, they had faced several problems in getting essentials. We thought of doing something about it,’’ Dhilli Rao said.
“Due to rapidly increasing COVID-19 cases in the town, we got an idea to introduce online shopping, SSV EGrocery, with a home delivery facility. Prior to starting the business, we met the wholesale dealers to get quality items. We ensured the items are delivered to the customers in an hour. We started the business with very low investment and of which we spent some amount for the development of the App and also for advertising the same,’’ Dhilli Rao said.
The techies developed an App to receive orders and charged Rs 9 to deliver items at the doorstep of people for a purchase cost of less than Rs 1,000. Though Mandasa is a small town, they started getting 30 orders per day. Apart from grocery items, they also deliver vegetables and fruits. As they started the business two weeks ago, they are on the job of creating public awareness.
B Shiva Prasad, a resident of Mandasa, said, “I ordered vegetables and fruits worth Rs 800 a few days ago and they delivered them in 45 minutes. Instead of going to the market amid the risk of infection, I place the orders on the App.” “I received the delivery in just half-an-hour after placing the order on the SSV EGrocery App. They charge less than the market price too.
The home delivery facility is very helpful especially for the elderly,” K Seetarama Sharma, a customer, said. Within a few days, they started getting orders on WhatsApp also. The duo deliver essentials from 8 am to 1 pm and from 5 pm to 7 pm. “The other motive behind introduction of EGrocery App is to reduce public movement for essentials,’’ he said. “Currently, we are taking orders from customers within a radius of 4 km,” Dhilli Rao signed off.
Turning COVID crisis into opportunity
The techies charge Rs 9 to deliver essentials at the doorstep of people for a purchase cost of less than Rs 1,000. Though Mandasa is a small town, they started getting 30 orders per day