This weekend, TechMoran caught up with South Africa’s Laudable, a social shopping startup for fashion lovers launched
mid this month in South Africa.
Laudable brings together the best locally available products from hundreds of local e-tailers on one social platform and is essentially a social bookmarking site that not only curates content based individual user’s tastes but allows users to tag products from any e-store and create their own social wishlist of products.
This is what Marvin TechMoran on their pan-African plans and on how unique Laudable is.
How unique is Laudable?
Unlike other social bookmarking tools available, everything on Laudable is immediately available for purchase in South Africa – a breath of fresh air for fashionistas who’ve had their noses pressed up against the window after discovering a product is only available across the pond, or for import at extortionate rates.
How many products to date?
There are currently over 1400 socially curated products from more than 100 online retailers available on Laudable and this number grows daily.
Who are the founders?
It’s myself, Ian Marvin. Briefly, I studied BSc Hons computer science at UCT, graduated at the end of 2008 and spent the next couple of years writing software for corporates before starting laudable.
My Co-Founder is Haydn Von Maltitz, a qualified CA(SA) with extensive corporate finance experience.
What inspired you guys to launch?
It’s far too difficult to discover cool e-tailers and products in South Africa. The existing mechanisms for discovery are facebook, google and word of mouth. This makes it difficult for e-tailers to get noticed, even though they sometimes have great products. So Laudable brings together the best products and stores on to one social platform where you can discover products and stores through crowdsourced social curation.
What is your business model?
At this point we just want to grow our user base and increase engagement with the app. Once we’re happy with there these 2 key metrics are at, we’ll look at: charging affiliate fees for generating clicks the convert to purchases, allowing retailers to push deals to qualified customers who like their products, and enabling retailers to see rich analytics about their products and their markets.
Who are you targeting as users?
Style conscious online shoppers in SA (SA for now)
Any seed fund, angel investors or partners?
We’re independently bootstrapped (for now).
Do you plan to expand to Africa?
Yes, definitely – as soon as we’re ready. We need, for instance, mobile apps and a couple of other features.
Any competition in South Africa?
No direct competitors at this point.
What else have you done that is successful?
Read more about the team here