US export is a Trillion $ industry, with roughly $800+ Billion market share of Organic Food Exports. Surprisingly, the functions of such a large scale industry are still massively manual (pen and paper ordering) between Suppliers, Exporters, Distributors & Retail Stores (mom-n-pop shops).
It is time to not only automate the process but also tackle some other pressing problems like
- counter the markups by middle-men/distributors
- reduce turn-around time in fulfilling orders
- insights into buying behaviors of customers
What it does
A set of responsive web pages for suppliers, distributors and small mom-n-pop shops have been set up to automate the entire flow of information as export/import orders are processed and fulfilled.
- An intuitive "pool purchasing" option allows smaller retail stores to directly place order with international suppliers, totally bypassing the markups of the local distributors.
- Finally, analytics on order data provide insights into the purchasing behavior of the end-customers. This plays a critical role in reducing the current time to fulfill orders as suppliers can anticipate demand and pre-stock international ports.
Challenges we ran into
- Understanding the depth of the problem statement and coming up with a shrink-wrapped solution for the same.
- Serving the app over HTTPS
- Using camera to read barcode in a web browser
Accomplishments that we're proud of
- Design Thinking session with a probable customer (they have made an offer to purchase our system post the hackathon).
- Setting up a full-stack solution in 36 hours :)
What we learned
The importance of co-innovation with the end-customer.
What's next for trade-O-bundle
Setup the entire platform to scale well and handle the expected data-loads of international trade.