Lucknow: Good observation makes a good businessman. While helping his friend’s family during the pandemic, Ankush Arora interacted with plenty of retail shopkeepers. He learned that their margin had drastically reduced due to massive online companies taking over their businesses. The e-commerce companies purchase goods in bulk at a higher margin and provide heavy discounts to their customers. 

Ankush understood the market situation and worked on it to launch a group-buying e-retail platform called ‘HashTag Bazaar’. Ankush deduced that if super tech giants were taking away the livelihood of retail shopkeepers, then the solution would also emerge from technology. 

Ankush Arora completed his school education from Lucknow. After his graduation from Mahatma Jyotiba Phule Rohilkhand University, he received a job offer from an American real estate company. He worked in America for a few years and returned to India in 2015. His first startup was called ‘Placio’; it was a platform for finding student housing. It was a successful venture, but later Ankush sold his stakes at the company. 

Collecting orders from home
Ankush’s company works on the ground level. His application is available to everyone. HashTag works with women from poor socio-economic backgrounds. Whenever an order is made through the app, the respective worker is notified, and they start preparing the order. All the women work from their home and are not required to visit factories or warehouses. 

Benefits for the retailers
The retailers were experiencing losses because they were buying products in small quantities. Ankush’s app works in such a way that helps these retailers bundle these multiple micro-orders together, turning them into one huge order. This method allows a retailer to sell their products at higher prices to their customers with lesser expenses at the wholesale level. 

Company becoming a success in 2 years
Ankush’s company has branches in Allahabad and Dehradun with his main branch operating in Lucknow. He plans to expand his company to other cities of Uttar Pradesh. He plans to expand his branches in Rajasthan and West Bengal in near future. 

At present, around 30 people work for the company. And within two years of launch, the company has a worth of Rs 100 crore.