The Retail Industry is the third largest sector in Pakistan’s economy with an estimated worth of over USD 42 billion. This industry includes small retailers, wholesalers and supermarkets, food brands, beverages, apparel, health and beauty products. Popular brands which have become household names over the years have expanded to various cities across Pakistan and continue to increase their customer base. Given such a premise, it is only natural that new brands pop up and get their share of the pie. However, while people are spending on clothing and food items more than ever, young brands find it very difficult to retain their newly acquired customers.
Perkup, co-founded by Abdullah Soomro and Hassan Qureshi, is a startup helping local brands manage and retain their customers and ultimately increase their revenue. Their SaaS-based offering enables businesses to create loyalty program for their customers, automate their marketing and send targeted promotions. When a customer visits a Perkup partner brand, they are signed up for that particular brand’s loyalty program and receive a loyalty card in return. The brand then collects the customer’s relevant data and keeps track of their spending which helps them reward customers through via a loyalty engine, automatically bring back new customers for a second visit, re-activate lost customers, engage customers on their birthdays, send customers targeted promotions and track response of each promotion, send out announcements to one or more customer groups, and have access to a dedicated merchant success team which helps them achieve their desired retention and revenue goals.
Up to 70% of first-time customers do not revisit a brand. Perkup is helping local brands increase their customer retention rate.
The Perkup app is targeted towards customers as well, however, this is not something the brand is pushing right now. Their main aim to tap into as many local brands as possible. They currently have 60 brands on board in over 100 locations in Karachi, Lahore, and Islamabad which mainly include salons and restaurants. When a brand comes signs up with Perkup, they procure their services with a monthly subscription fee that ranges from PKR 10,000 to 100,000. So far, a cumulative 150,000 transactions have been handled via Perkup’s services by its partner brands.
By working closely with businesses, PerkUp has realized that they need one solution which could help them manage their entire business operations seamlessly as well as retain customers. Armed with these insights, it recently introduced retail, salon and restaurant management solutions using available open source platforms. These products are fully integrated with loyalty and marketing functionalities that it already provides. It will also working to bring to market a customer acquisition platform enabling businesses to get more customer through their door. With this suite of products, PerkUp aims to become a complete operating system for local businesses. It has already installed its business management software at 5 businesses and has been received well.
Perkup charges their partner brands with a subscription fee between PKR 10,000 to 100,000. So far 150,000 customer transactions have been handled via their services.
Perkup had a vision to expand and provide customer acquisition services as well. Although, when Perkup joined Telenor Velocity in September last year, their goal was to tap into a larger customer segment. Their stint at Telenor Velocity has exposed them to invaluable mentor ship opportunities.
In the past few months, they have refined their vision for Perkup and subsequently introducing an e-commerce brand called Smiles.pk. This platform will host the entire inventory of partner brands and bring in new customers for them. The platform is currently running in a Beta version with an official launch coming later this year.
Perkup raised a cumulative $150,000 from various investors in 2016. The startup does not plan to go for another investment round in the short term. They hope to reach 100+ brands by the end of this year. Perkup is aiming to become a one-stop place for customer retention, acquisition and business management solutions for brands.
Other startups at Telenor Velocity
- Meet Pakshine, a startup making solar power accessible for Pakistanis
- Meet Micropower Labs, a Pakistani startup with customer base in 35 countries
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- Meet EcoEnergy, a startup aiming to solve energy crisis in Pakistan
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