Bookmarked Ventures: Delivering books & happiness to Mumbai University

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Bookmarked Ventures LLP is a brainchild of 4 college students who wanted to be a part of growing e-commerce world. BookmarkedVentures is focused to cater to the educational needs of Mumbai University students by providing course textbooks at a discounted rate along with a quick doorstep delivery service.

Currently they are providing services in Mumbai only with an expansion plan to other parts of the country. Apart from course material they are also providing books related to GRE, GMAT, TOEFL etc.

Once you have used your books, you have an opportunity to return your books for an handsome 60% discount .

If you are from Mumbai or Pune and love the signed copies of a novel… then Bookmarked is a destination for you.

Techaloo got a chance to have a chit-chat with Mr. Jigar Parmar, Co-Founder @ Bookmarked Ventures. Let see what does he wants to share with us today.

Techaloo: When did you start your journey?

Jigar: The website went live on January 23rd, but we had started working on this from November 2014.

Techaloo: How did this idea come to your mind?

Jigar: Indian Ecommerce industry after existing for a decade is changing fast. It is expected to grow by 47 percent, to more than Rs. 470 Billion this year, according to the Internet and Mobile Association of India, and reach Rs. 12 Lakh crore by 2020. This has always encouraged and motivated us to focus on the ecommerce industry. We all see tremendous potential in the ecommerce industry for decades to come.

Techaloo: What hurdles did you face while starting?

Jigar: We have faced many challenges like Logistics, Delivery, Operations and linking the suppliers. We have worked hard to tie up with the distributors around Mumbai.

Currently we are looking to partner with more distributors and getting connected with more Authors which requires a lot of follow up and time consuming.

We have also faced internal problems in back end operations, handling of the data and packaging and delivering of books.  But, all that is part and parcel of a startup, so we all motivate each other and work towards a common goal. . Also, tackling these challenges becomes easier as a team.

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Techaloo: What were your vision/ mission while starting?

Jigar: “Our Mission is to provide our customers with the best online shopping experience from beginning to end, with a smart, searchable website, easytofollow instructions, clear and secure payment methods, and fast, quality delivery.”

We aimed to became one stop solution for the needs of Engineering Students across Mumbai.

Techaloo: Tell us something about the services provided by Bookmarked.

Jigar: Bookmarked Ventures is a privately started online retail venture. We, at Bookmarked, cater to the educational needs of Mumbai University students (And expanding in other universities in India) by providing course textbooks and other helpful materials at a discounted rate. Apart from that, we also provide books for GRE, GMAT, TOEFL and novels etc. To know more about the birth of this venture, visit us at www.bookmarked.co.in Bookmarked is a first of its kind online book store that sells TechMax and Technical publications with the provision of Returning all course books after a year at 60% Cashback!

  • We also have a Green Initiative, where we provide flowering seeds along with every delivery/order of books, to spread awareness about the Green Earth. This message not only reaches our customers but in the neighbourhood as well.

Techaloo: How are you different from other players in the market?

  • We provide and collect books at doorstep: Buying and returning the books has never been so easy. We try to deliver books in the fastest possible way and at minimum cost. For returning of the used book, the customer gets a reminder on their mobiles phones and when they RSVP, our representative will go to collect the book.
  • Hyperlocal: We aim to target a particular section of the students and then expand to various other branches and link the distributors, publishers and retailers for the cheapest and fastest supplies.
  • No availability issue: As we directly approach the dealers/publishers, the availability of the new books in market is well known in advance by our Inventory Management team.
  • We are youth centric; “India has an unrivalled youth demographic65% of its population is 35 or under and half the country’s population of 1.25 billion people is under 25 years of age.” The Guardian.
    We provide the best possible service to our customers who are mainly the youth of our society. We understand their immediate need of books and the importance of receiving the books on time.So unlike other brands; we mainly concentrate on the youth of our society.

Techaloo: How many students have you served till date?

Jigar: We have served over 1000 students in past 6 months. We have a reach in around 10 engineering colleges around Mumbai and linked more than 25 distributors around this area which gives us a better grip in the market. We also plan to augment our reach in the near future.

Techaloo: How many books do you have on your catalog? 

Jigar: Currently, we have approximately over 10,000 books listed on our website. This includes over 5000 Engineering books, 2000 Novels and an over of 3000 other related books. Our team maintains an inventory record of all the books everyday and updates them regularly with the release of new books or novels.

Techaloo: What was the reason to choose Mumbai to start?

Jigar: Mumbai is the next business hub of India. We reside here and have to manage our studies along side with our startup. The startup ecosystem and the networks which we build here are amazing. It is easier for us to categorically divide the market into segments which makes our approach simpler. Having done our primary and high school education here we are aquatinted with the students difficulties that they face, hence we aim to provide simpler and easier solutions to their problems.

Techaloo: What are your plans for next 3 years?

Jigar: We plan to reach out to every engineering college and to be a one stop solution to the needs of engineering students from Mumbai University. We plan to optimize our operations and meet the target of 1 day delivery. Also, keep learning and innovating along our way to connect with the students in better ways. Also, we believe in being “Indian at heart, global at mindset”. We try to get connected with experienced entrepreneurs across the globe and get recognized globally.

Techaloo: How do you manage the startup along with your studies?

Jigar: Well, managing time is not an option but a complete necessity. We all prioritize our work and work with deadlines. Managing your startup at college needs a perfect balance.  Studies and college coursework is equally important for us as our startup.  We four sit after college hours and work on our startup, and during weekends we spend entire day brainstorming and making schedules for the coming week. This helps us to work in an organized manner, keeping our college studies and coursework in mind.

Techaloo: What message do you want to give to your fellow students who want to start on their own?

Jigar: “Do it now. Sometimes later becomes never
Start but do not jump. Starting up requires a great deal of market research, demographic segmentation and critical analysis of the product.
If you have an idea which could possibly create an impact in the society, DO NOT keep them locked in your head and wait for somebody else to implement it.  Get connected with like minded people and keep working hard until you have your dreams come true.
India needs Entrepreneurs who can take this nation forward through innovation and technology, and the right age to develop your entrepreneurial skills is when you are at college.
Come forward and help this country grow.As our honourable Prime Minister says “StartUp India, Stand Up India

Techaloo: What do you think about techaloo?

Jigar: Techaloo.com is doing fantastic work of promoting student entrepreneurs and fostering entrepreneurship among people. It provides platform for student startups to share their experiences and creates a community of like minded people to come and share their experience.
We wish them very best for their future endeavors.

Meet Co-Founders:

Aakar KaleAakar Kale 

Loves Networking and travelling. has keen interest in mobile Technology, data analytics, and developing marketing strategies.

 

Chaitanya SardalChaitanya Sardal

Has his eyes on the sky but feet on the ground. Keeps everyone motivated and united. Pursuing engineering and also has a passion for cooking.

 

Jigar_parmarJigar Parmar 

Highly ambitious and self motivated. Start-up and Engineering Enthusiast. Loves to research on online marketing, networking, and startup development. Associates himself with young achievers and student entrepreneurs.

 

Pratik MandavgadePratik Madavgade

Dreams big and loves to hustle. engineer and sports enthusiast. Belives in the motto start young, retire young.

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Mohit Bansal(23) is B.Tech in Electronics and Communication Engineering from Indian School of Mines, Dhanbad, India. He has interest in business and entrepreneurship and has published couple of research articles. He is also associated with various NGOs. He is with Techaloo when it was just in concept stage. The Techaloo site was not existing even then. Currently Mohit is working with Mu Sigma as a Business Analyst Profile.

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