Wagon Shopping founders Edgar Ochieng’ and Musa Mutetwi have applied themselves to come up with an e-commerce platform that hopes to revolutionize the way Kenyans shop. Launched on 8th February 2017, Wagon Shopping merges the logistics of shopping with the convenience of shopping online, a welcomed solution for Kenya’s busy populace. Speaking about the new platform, Wagon C.E.O Edgar Ochieng says, “we are a logistics company in the sense that we handle all deliveries ourselves through the Wagon Driver program were people with motorbikes or cars can sign up and deliver for us. We are also a Retail Platform as you can practically find any supermarket product on our platform.”
Working together for less than a year, the two have produced Wagon Shopping a dynamic, interactive site that offers different solutions to consumer needs. With easy navigation and easy purchase methods including Mpesa and Paypal, Wagon Shopping CEO Edgar believes that the website is truly a cut above the rest. Offering delivery within 2 hours after purchase, Wagon Shopping could quickly ease Nairobi shoppers of the anxieties of entering a crowded supermarket on a weeknight.
It may seem that their business model is bound to succeed, however, Musa acknowledged that there have been several challenges. Being students, the young driven techies have little time for sleep. Juggling the various aspects of their lives has been difficult ensuring none suffers. Another major obstacle has been the process of researching the viability of the idea in the current market. Bob Collymore said “Kenyans are a peculiar people” and this rings true when launching an e-commerce site. With an average of 700 hits on the Wagon Shopping site thus far, gaining data on their progress in relation to that of competitors could help the duo secure investments. Nonetheless, the two face challenges with an optimistic outlook on the progress of the organization.
The duo sat down with Capital Campus to share their experience thus far. According to Ochieng, having a partner that complemented his inadequacies has been key to their success thus far. Musa Mutetwi is an Applied Computer Technology major at USIU whereas Edgar graduated in 2016 with a Bachelors in Journalism. Merging tech with business, the two have overcome various hurdles in their journey thus far in Kenya’s growing tech savanna. From their experience thus far, there are a few pointers every tech startup should be mindful of before jumping into the deep end.
Here are the top 3 lessons learned so far:
1.Always Have Something To Show
Before approaching a potential investor, always have something to present. Data on the progress so far, and the product you hope the investor will buy into, are essential. It is always important to look prepared before engaging a third party. When presenting your idea to other entities always have a Non-Disclosure Agreement and even patent your idea to avoid losing your idea to larger corporations.
2.Do Not Give Up
Though business is difficult, one must work past the difficulties. Ray Kroc says, “nothing in this world can beat persistence.” In business, one must always have enough passion to carry them over the disappointment failure brings. Every failure is a chance to learn and make the necessary adjustments that could lead you to success.
3.Patience And Time Do More Than Strength Or Passion
To succeed in the tech world, one must have patience. For many of the pioneers who have had lots of success in the tech world like Steve Jobs, Bill Gates and Steve Wozniak, they tell of thier story to the top as an experience full of pitfalls. Their story is not one of overnight success. Patience could be the difference between realizing a dream and the actualization of an idea.