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With over 4k product varieties, RainCan strives to change the way you eat breakfast

With over 4k product varieties, RainCan strives to change the way you eat breakfast
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You're reading Entrepreneur India, an international franchise of Entrepreneur Media.

Do you feel lazy getting up in morning to buy a packet of milk or bread from your nearby shop? Now you don’t need to feel so. Pune-based grocery e-commerce start-up RainCan delivers daily breakfast essentials like dairy, eggs and bread right at your doorstep.

Inception

Founded by two IIT-Bombay graduates Abhijeet Kumar and Munendra Singh, RainCan provides everything you need for a fresh delicious breakfast right at your home. Operating on a hyperlocal model, everything you order will be available at your doorstep within few hours. Under this model, you can order morning essentials like milk, bread, eggs as well as other fresh produce like vegetables and fruits. 

“The whole mantra behind RainCan is ‘eat fresh every day’. Typically, people either run out of their daily essentials whenever they are required or store large quantities in their refrigerator, which means they are not eating fresh and things keep going bad. We are helping our customers plan their daily/weekly perishable requirements so that they receive goods on a daily basis. This means things are available as per requirement, you get to eat fresh everyday and reduce wastage,” said Abhijeet Kumar, Co-founder, RainCan.

Seeing huge growth in subscription customer base in last 5-6 weeks, addition of customers depends on marketing activities, which is skewed towards outdoor marketing in this case. They have a very localised and concentrated marketing approach hinging on efforts towards sponsorship of society events, pamphlets, society level kiosks, and door-to-door marketing etc.

How it works?

RainCan enrolls people on a prepaid subscription basis under which they are offered product categories such as dairy, bakery, perishables, staples etc on a daily basis. The venture provides various modes of payments like cash and electronic payment facility to their customers.   

They also provide their customers with multiple communication channels like text message, mail, Whatsapp or by just logging into their RainCan account, so that they can easily modify, pause or stop the services. In addition to this, they also offer their customers top-up across 4,000 SKUs (Stock Keeping Units) in categories like staples and daily care.

The most important task for any venture dealing in grocery is to maintain the inventory and manage the warehouse cost. Speaking on the same lines, Munendra Singh, Co-founder, RainCan, said, “We have engaged with a chain of distributors for several product offerings and procure from them daily, hence, cutting down the need of a warehouse and an inventory. This helps us in keeping our overall cost low, which we are able to pass on to the customers.”

What makes it unique?

Currently, doing 100 orders a day and targeting to ramp it up to 500 orders within a month, Kumar believes that their subscription-based model is what makes them unique, where customers can subscribe for default goods and also top-up their order on ad-hoc basis. “Our logistics platform is very unique to cater huge number of orders in very short time span using technology to improve communication and reduce errors. We are also setting up forecasting platform for customers, where we will plan their daily, weekly and monthly needs, and alert them in advance for essential items in kitchen,” said Kumar.

Fund Raising

RainCan, which is presently operating in Pune only, secured an angel investment of $100k from Ajeet Khurana, former CEO, SINE, and an Angel Investor and Mentor. The venture plans to use this fund to set-up delivery infrastructure and add more customers to subscription platform.

Post this funding round, Kumar plans to raise more funds in coming months. “We are looking to raise another round of $1 million. We are currently in talks with VCs and angel investors. This round will help us invest more into team building, technology for better customer experience and marketing, which will help them achieve transactions of 10,000 orders a day. This will make sure that we are covering Pune in a reasonable way. We will also start running pilots in few select cities as well,” said Kumar.

Growth and Expansion Plans

Currently focusing on dairy and bakery products, RainCan, in long run, plans to focus on more non-cooked items such as dosa mix, breakfast essentials, etc. “We aim to bring cooked breakfast in cost effective way utilizing our delivery infrastructure,” informed Kumar. “Currently, our marketing efforts are very concentrated in few areas. Our expansion plan is targeted towards covering the entire Pune city before going to other cities. We would also run pilots in couple of cities in few months from now to decide on next cities. As of now, we don't have confirmed names,” adds Kumar.

Market Scenario

Market of morning essentials is around $100 billion. The area is largely untapped and holds huge growth potential. Delivery of fresh produce every morning is relatively new concept. This sector is highly unorganized so far and not too many players are working on this idea. “A lot of work needs to be done to set an efficient logistics platform to deliver huge number of orders within a very short time span of couple of hours. Subscription nature of business model allows you to engage with customers on daily basis and provide them the confidence of buying with you safely. This opens up a lot of opportunity to position new products in long term. Technology will play a huge role to interact with customers and engage efficiently with them in real-time,” Kumar opined. 

Edition: December 2016

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