BENGALURU: Online classifieds company Quikr has launched QuikrServices, a separate vertical for local-services. The platform currently lists home-services providers in 11 categories, including home help, repairs, internet installations and tiffin services, across 16 cities.
Quikr, which had been listing these services in its general classifieds platform earlier, has now enhanced its database, categorised it better, provides on-call assistance to connect to service-providers and a dashboard to make conversations and track them, with the launch of the new specialised platform. QuikrServices joins a list of several other verticals such as QuikrC2C, Quikr-Cars, QuikrHomes and Quikr-Jobs launched by the classifieds companies in the last few months. PD Sundar, Head of QuikrServices, said: “We have a lot of users transacting across our platform and we know a lot about them, so we can customise our service offerings in terms of recommendations.
There is a lot of cross-sell opportunity… It not only helps us build a robust business model, as a one-stop solution for the user, it also gives a delightful user-experience.” He said listings on Quikr-Services were mostly established firms of service-provider (SMEs) and had few individuals listed.
Local services has been an active segment in the last few years in India, with 446 companies established in this space, attracting an investment of $222.9 million, with home-services alone getting $13.3 million, according to Tracxn!.
Quikr’s launch comes shortly after reports suggested that ecommerce giant Amazon is making a strategic investment in local-services startup Housejoy. Similar investment interests in the sector have also been shown by Indian ecommerce portal Snapdeal, according to sources.
But, existing startups in this space seem unaffected. Aditya Rao, Founder and CEO of LocalOye, which offers services in about 90 categories, with about one-fifth of its business coming from home-services, said: “It only validates what we are doing. Having more and more competition is always a great way to be certain that it is a great industry to be in.” Varun Khaitan, Founder of Urbanclap, offering services across six verticals in four cities, is certain that Quikr’s model cannot succeed in this business.
“They are trying to use their existing product, which works for a different case, to expand into this space. The fact that they have a large brand will give them some inroad, but I do not think any of them will be able to make success as much as a pure play local-services player.”
Aseem Khare, Founder and CEO of Taskbob, which is primarily a home-services provider, agrees. “It all boils down to who will give the best customer experience. All these companies are going to have to build from scratch.”
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