Within a month of the launch, the trio helped 15 people looking for rooms and roommates and has enabled a saving of cumulative brokerage worth Rs. 1,50,000. However, barely into their 2nd month, it is but natural that Grabhouse doesn’t have any revenues yet. But plans are afloat to have cash inflows within a few months. Their business has been well accepted and appreciated by customers because of their USPs – compatibility test with prospective roommates based on behaviour and habits. And, social connect feature that helps people find roommates within their personal network. We spoke to the team to talk more about their plans and their way forward.
What is Grabhouse’s business model? Grabhouse is a 0% brokerage platform for finding roommates and rental accommodation. The owners or current tenants put up the listings and room-seekers contact them directly. Grabhouse is a free model wherein after becoming a ‘platform to go for saving hefty brokerage’ premium and paid listings will come into picture. What are the major challenges in your line of business and how did/do you overcome them? The major challenges are in competing with other online platforms in terms of number of listings. Since we do not work with brokers and listings are uploaded by the owners or current tenants themselves the number of listings are less. We are striving to cover each and every area of Mumbai and the listings are increasing steadily. Grabhouse’s unique approach to listing and finding a room has attracted a lot of youngsters who are our target customers. Our prompt customer service and user friendly interface has been much appreciated by the registered users which are over 750 in number. Do you have a mentor who guides/advices you on matters of the business? Grabhouse was one of the 10 companies incubated by India Quotient bootcamp led by Mr. Anand Lunia. During the program we got invaluable mentorship from IQ bootcamp team as well as Mr. Tarun Davda of Matrix Partners and Mr. Sampad Swain of Instamojo. We have also received expert guidance from advisors Mr. Chetan Bohra and Mr. Navin Ranka who hold a combined real estate experience of over 10 years. Have you benefitted from the use of any specific technology for your regular operations? Grabhouse has introduced an Android mobile app to list the property on the website directly. This is first of its kind mobile app that uploads the listing in real time and very quickly. This app has saved room listers from filling long forms on websites. What strategy do you follow for Customer Satisfaction & Expansion? Personal touch has been our biggest edge. The customers get a very quick and personalized response at every stage of house/roommate hunting. We plan to expand to 10 major cities within few months. What, according to you, are the top 3 skills needed to be a successful entrepreneur? 1) Perseverance 2) Patience 3) Agility Note, Prateek Shukla is an alumnus of IIT Kanpur while Ankit Singhal is an alumnus of IIT Delhi. Pankhuri Shrivastava did her B.E. from RGTU Bhopal in 2011 and was working with Teach for India as a fellow for two years. We wish the young team the very best. May Grabhouse kickstart in a very big way! Website – www.grabhouse.com