Startup Idea for Indian entrepreneurs

If you’re interested in a startup idea with a viable revenue model, here’s one:

Start a B2B service that acts as a broker between Indian corporates and service providers offering a corporate discount program.  So for instance, provide a corporate membership discount program where the employees of the company can avail discounts on services like mobile services, travel services, electronics, retail, autos etc. You take a cut from the service providers and /or the company as well.

My research on prevalent players in this market yielded in only one or two results. Probably other players exist as well, but on the whole, this market seems to be pretty unorganized and its ripe for someone to take the lead.

Thoughts / comments ?

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18 comments

  1. Hi,
    I think its a great idea.

    Regards
    Rajat

  2. Mee Too think this idea has potential.

    Somebody like Reliance/Tata can take this from the grassroot level or acquire some firm which already has.

  3. its an idea worth exploring.. a “one-stop shop” for corporates to enhance employee benefits n engagement will ease out on a lot of their running around!!
    only that are indian companies willing to do so!!

  4. i think there are couple of companies who works like a ‘one stop shop for corporates

    and it has lads of potential :)

  5. kushal parmar

    Hey! that’s a gud idea. Is any one ready,then we can workout together.
    Buzz me if any one interested—– kushalparmar@live.com

  6. Sounds like a good idea worth exploring. Only problem is that almost all service providers who would be interesting in giving corporate discounts right now have their own corporate sales people who do these deals right now.

    It’ll be easier for the corporates to be dealing with a single entity but I’m not sure if the service providers would be interested.

  7. How does one make sure that the deal goes through “them”. The interested parties may just find find themselves through the b2b site and then contact externally to avoid the cuts/commissions.

    I too had though about it, but I passed over it as it was not worth.

    Also in a deal which offers good commissions, it is unlikely that they will “meet over the internet”. They will always prefer parties referred by someone they trust or they have worked with in the past.

    • you’re getting it wrong.

      employees dont pay anything — any cuts or commissions to the service provider.

      take a simple example. Lets say you are the middleman. you aggregate deals from service providers and offer it to companies.

      so, lets say you sign up airtel as a service provider.You negotiate a discounted price with them – say you get IBM India on board. you negotiate the discount that airtel is willing to pay to ibm employees. you then provide a portal to ibm india employees which will link to the airtel deal or have additional details about how employees can avail that discount.

      when you aggregate other such service providers, the separate portal makes sense.

      its a win win for everyone. ibm india doesnt want the headache of negotiating with each provider individually. they can talk to one company and start providing benefits to their employees.

      for service providers, it means higher sales, more business.

      hope that clears how it’ll work..

  8. One may propose that you will hide the contact details and all stuff, but you sure cannot hide the name of the service provider naa? So the buyer would just google the service provider and cut the deal.

    • such services exist in the US for a lot of companies. The concept is that you create a separate portal – ask for the employee details – like say your serial # or the company email id or such. and each service provider provides a unique code for each of the service.

      some services (for instance att provides discounts to ibm US employees), email the details regarding the discount to the employees work id — that way, the user is verified etc.

      other service providers like automobiles might require you show your badge or pay stub when making the purchase.

      all can be done –not too difficult.

  9. Hi Rohan,
    What you suggested above is absolutely correct.I think a lot of websites that showed deals for booking hotels for holidays suffered from this.
    I think a better model would be to charge monthly fees from companies for showing their Ads on the website,ofcourse to get to this level initially the service has to be kept free for some companies.That way the website will atleast make money after some time and after that it doesnot matter whether customer book from the website or not. Also to get to the level when you can start charging fees will normally take years of hard work, but that is true for any business for that matter, take the case of this blog itself i think it started in 2006.
    Also the idea has great potential to extend to small customers/small shops also like for e.g a small restaurant for bulk booking on small parties (e.g birthday party), or a small book shop selling bulk amout of school books to kids. Also it can be later extended to a small factory doing bulk booking for raw materials.
    I think the Idea is more or less like putting Sams Club/BJs or other super stores online for people to allow bulk booking, let not be employees only.
    Please do suggest your inputs as well.

    Regards
    Rajat

  10. Hi All,

    1) Idea is really good and their is suerly need of it in present times

    Something simlar clicked me sometime back when I was barganing with one of the mobile service providers for the offer which they were making to us(CUG and all) .It was not at all lucrative but we did not have choice as we wanted to move forward wihtout wasting time on such issues.
    The crux of the idea lies here .Organizations may not want to spend their time on such activites.Let someone else do this for them so that they can focus on their core bussiness.

    2) About revenue genration model
    Initial bussiess model should not charge the companies instead we must provide them services for the free. Revenues in intial stages can start coming from the service providers.Say a hotel/restaurent etc which will get the increase in sales at the end of the day.

    Any commments

    • yes, it *may* work if its free, but then how does one make money?
      We cannot charge the employees because salaried class is already the most taxed class…its the companies who are minting money….but they won’t give it to us :-P

      • Hi Rohan,

        Charging end users :
        I firmly believe revenue generation shouldn’t be the primary focus for any start up in the beginning.(at least in a service industry).Think of any successful model -most of them started as a free service provider to the end user. Because every end user will be skeptical for pay for a new service till the time that service has not proved itself.
        Please note I am here talking about service industry only if you are taking about some product based start up it is a different story all together.

        So where will money come from:
        It is very true we cannot change employees but at the same time we shouldn’t charge companies as well. For the first few years money should be coming from the service providers. As mentioned in my last comment say Hotel/restaurant etc or say Airtel et al. And they shouldn’t be hesitant to pay to us because they are also getting customers in bulk.

  11. kushal parmar

    Hi hemant, lets workout on this idea & give it a better shape?

  12. I think the best way to move up is try your hand in buisness,if willing to move on mutually beneficial terms,please get back to harishmanek2006@yahoo.com

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