With the recent launch of SafeTrade, the startup proves to be solving major trust problem in the buying and sales industry. TechMoran chats with the founder Edmond Adokwu where he talks many things about his new startup. These things ranged from how well people have accepted the platform, their biggest challenge in the industry, how they are funded and many more.
Tell us about SafeTrade, and the service it offers.
SafeTrade is a secured way of carrying out transactions (i.e. Item and Service transactions). You can start a transaction with someone using just their name, email address and address — they don’t need to have a SafeTrade account.
How did you come about the SafeTrade idea? Were you ever a victim of scammers who posed as sellers or buyers?
Coincidentally two friends of mine were victims of scammers. One got her item but it was fake, while the other was blocked by the account on Instagram that she made payment to without getting her item.
Though your startup launched very recently, how well have people turned up?
We have gotten a considerable amount of registrants from our generic social media advertising, we have gotten a whole lot of reviews which have been taken into consideration.
Do you recognize any competitor in the current market? How do you intend to outperform them?
Currently this is an untapped market space. However, we have only Konga with KongaPay which is strictly for users of their platform. Besides, KongaPay offers a fraction of what the SafeTrade Platform offers. KongaPay doesn’t cover service transactions. Everybody has a need for the SafeTrade platform as it covers all spheres of transactions e.g. providing services, buying and selling etc.
What do you think is the biggest challenge in the industry you just launched in?
The biggest challenge would be earning the trust of the public. Earning the trust of the public is a milestone every company in the Fintech space will have to overcome. This is important because if people don’t trust us, there is no way they will use our solution. Another important but secondary challenge is getting exposure to the public (i.e. awareness of our platform).
Tell us about the team behind SafeTrade.
A small team of four members divided into two teams of Tech & Marketing of two members each
How do you intend to deal with insincere buyers?
Our sellers are advised to keep documents as proof of delivery of items to buyers with pictorial evidence from courier companies to be verified by SafeTrade. After a buyer makes payment to the SafeTrade platform, SafeTrade notifies the seller to send the item to the buyer, who inspects the item. SafeTrade then mandates the seller to upload signed receipts or pictorial evidence that the item was delivered to the buyer by the courier company.
How fast do you anticipate your growth as a startup?
In today’s day and age social media marketing and transactions is the back bone of some SME’s who want to have a market place or a store to sell items but do not have the required funds to do so, they turn to social media because it’s the best way of reaching out to the general public today. These SME’s are part of our target market and adoption of the solution we have provided is what will move us forward. Right now we are focusing our resources on spreading the word and getting these businesses to use our platform. If you open Instagram today for example, if you look at 5 posts i am sure that at least 1 of these posts is about someone selling a product, same goes for Twitter and facebook. So growth of our business can be very fast depending of the wide spread adoption of our platform.
What are your short term goals as a startup?
We have set for ourselves milestones which we intend to meet, these milestones are what we will use to checkmate ourselves and our impact in the market we are trying to improve. Our target is to have 250 – 400 Users and 100 – 200 transactions within our first 2 – 3 months of operations.
What other problems does SafeTrade intend to solve in the nearest future?
In the nearest future we are looking at including some 3rd party vendors who will add value to our platform and also ease the execution of transactions generally. A good example is logistics agency, that’s all we can say for now.
Trust is very paramount in this sector that you have launched. Tell our readers why SafeTrade is a trustworthy platform.
What is the most important factor in a transaction; money. Money is the value you are exchanging for a service or an item that can give back that value to you. What SafeTrade offers is safety when conducting transactions. We make use of trusted payment gateways that have built a good and strong reputation for themselves with the general public over the years i.e. REMITA and PAYSTACK. We also make use of Ncrypt; a custom developed encryption cypher which ensures that vital information provided to us is only readable to you, the user, and the receiving party where the case may be and nobody else in between to ensure that our users are safe when transacting on our platform.