One of the most exciting parts about going to a digital start-up conference is to check out what’s new, what’s the next big thing and how consumer behavior is changing. It seems that the e-commerce trend is here to stay, while the daily-deal fever is slowly fading out. If an industry is a reflection of its citizens, then understanding our local start-ups fosters a better understanding of ourselves. Here is a list of five must-watch start-ups from the Boost conference last week.
What would you do for Rp 50,000 ($5.55)? Pick up someone’s laundry? Walk their dogs? Gobann.com is a Web site for people who want to offer their services in exchange for a fee of exactly Rp 50,000 (Gobann is the informal Indonesian word for 50,000 rupiah in Chinese vernacular). Both the idea of micro-labor and the small wage offered at Gobann.com may seem trivial, but it does offer a solution for those who really need some extra money. How many college students out there find it hard to save cash for books and other essentials, to say nothing about some spending money. It’s a redefined job market that deserves support and attention.
Everybody has that gift or item of their dreams, something that they wish they could have, but can’t afford. Wishkoo is a make-a-wish social commerce service, where you can post your desired wish list for everybody to see. If your birthday happens to be around the corner, you can make your deepest desires public on the internet for your family and friends, and let them chip in to buy that special something. The Web site is still under development, but founder Chaya Kusuma said it plans to launch next month.
A friend’s birthday is coming up and of course you don’t have time to go shopping for a gift. You’ll probably end up with the same, boring options: Books? Chocolate? A new scarf? Fokado.com is a simple solution to the present paradigm. Their slogan is to “give something different,” and encourages people to buy their friends “a new experience.” Fokado offers a list of vouchers for fun activities, such as make-up and hair-do instruction, private cooking classes, a tattoo experience and even DJ lessons. Being branded as a gifting company is definitely a fresh take among e-commerce crowds. Fokado is now up and running.
Do you enjoy the sweet simplicity of a sleek t-shirt? A new start-up canonizes this classic, underrated garment into a stylish, customized t-shirt with a personalized design. Customers can upload their own patterns and add text and colors at Gravira.com. The award winning start-up Gantibaju.com offers a similar service, but at Gravira, there is no minimum order — you can design and purchase just one t-shirt at a time, which will be the only one of its kind in the world. The service is already up.
Ever heard of Kickstarter? Wujudkan.com is the localized version of the crowd funding service, but focuses on creative endeavors. Wujudkan is the Indonesian word for “make it happen,” which screams encouragement for Indonesian audiences to participate in crowd funding, or collecting money from the masses through the Web site, where artists can explain what their next project is, how much money they need and how they’ll spend it. Successful crowd funding could revolutionize the entertainment field, which is predominately occupied by frustrated, and financially-struggling creative laborers. Co-founder Mandy Marahimin, who is also a film producer, says the biggest challenge is to gain the trust of consumers. Wujudkan is still in closed beta at the moment, but is expected to launch in February.