Kapruka

“No More Excuses! E commerce is a DO or DIE for Lankan Businesses” – Dulith Herath

Sri Lanka’s e-com pioneer Dulith Herath says in exclusive interview discussing how his network of online retail facilitators, from ‘Kapruka’ to the latest ‘Grasshoppers’, gives Sri Lankan businesses everything they need to ace the online retail game.

“Sri Lankan businesses need to take a good look at how dinosaur enterprises were affected in bigger markets across the world. They were big, once relevant but completely outdated when the digital revolution happened and the online buying culture erupted. It became a fast downfall to those dinosaurs. But, we don’t have to repeat the same mistakes here. There’s room to change, but not much time. So, now is the time you need to get behind this, before it’s too late,” says Dulith Herath. As the man who pioneered the ecommerce sector in Sri Lanka, Herath has a wealth of wisdom to offer any business on how to get their online game right. Right now, he has just completed what he calls ‘Sri Lanka’s first complete e commerce facilitator network’. For years now, Herath has been working in developing the country’s ecommerce sector through his own ventures like Kapruka and Grasshoppers; going as far as meeting Asia’s e-com king Jack Ma of Alibaba. Sharing more on this, Herath joined Daily FT for an exclusive interview where he discussed the future of e-tail, how Sri Lankan businesses are losing out by not tapping into the online marketplace, and why there are no more excuses left for local businesses to get their e commerce game on point. “It’s a do-or-die really,” he says.

“It’s not even a question to ask whether e commerce revolution will happen in Sri Lanka; it’s just a question of when, and it’s already happening”

Dulith has studied the e-commerce landscapes in markets all over the world, from US, Canada, India, China to Thailand, observing the common traits. He pointed out that everywhere, the online buying phenomenon was welcomed at different paces— but surely and most definitely, it was always welcomed by consumers to eventually dominate the everyday purchasing habits. “It’s not to say that people will never go into a shop, but traditional retail will only survive at the more experiential end of the spectrum. For everyday shopping people will always resort to convenience, and online is hard to beat in this matter.” Herath also added that in every country, the entry of a giant player with major investments would bring about a significant ‘hockey-stick’ spike in the e commerce sales causing the entire sector to grow rapidly. “We’ve seen this in every country, from Amazon to Flipkart… Because when investment comes, the concessions to convert consumers into adapters become possible, and once they convert, the it’s a matter of continuing the habit. In Sri Lanka, this happened too, and the ripples of this are felt across the entire chain…and this is exactly what I hope will happen more often here with big companies like Softlogic being present. The share that investors can also gain is massive, because they’re breaking new paths here.” He assures that it’s only a matter of time for Sri Lankan businesses to realize that without e commerce, they’re not even scratching the surface of the possibilities available in the worldwide markets. “Accessibility to the online market is there now, the question is, are you ready to work towards it?”

“The idea that the markets in the South Asian region are not ready is a myth. About 15% of the Indian market is online. It’s only 22% even in the US.”

“If you look at the biggest retailers here in Sri Lanka, they’re not online. And when I say online, I mean really online. For most, getting online is a matter of adding a shopping cart to their website, cutting a ribbon and a cake, releasing a press story and waiting for something to happen. And when nothing happens, they fire the team,  start again, maybe give a discount, and have the customers flock, take the discount and never return…so it will keep dying this natural death, and they give it up saying the market is not ready. It doesn’t work like that. For me, even if 99% of my retail is brick-and-mortar, I will still go after developing that 1% because that’s the future. You need to get into it, and be serious about it.”

Herath explains that for e commerce to really work and become a success for a company, it takes the business leaders to understand that it is the future. With global statistics pointing out that online marketplace will only continue to boom, bringing in new accessibility and market shares from every corner of the world, it seems only obvious that e commerce will be the most popular form of buying and selling tomorrow. “Leaders need to motivate their teams to keep digging at it; keep investing; keep analysing the data; keep communicating with the customer…only then, it will begin to happen. And if you invest in this now, when the primary commercial channel becomes e commerce in the very near future, you will still be in the game.”

“And remember, the world is your competition now…”

Hearth spins the conversation to zoom in on another point of view. What does radical accessibility mean to the consumers here? Will Sri Lankan consumers stay loyal to local brands that don’t take the online retail world seriously, when the same or better products are available from abroad, at the click of a button? “It’s not just the Sri Lankan businesses having access to the consumer markets across the world. It’s the other way round too… our businesses need to remember that the local consumers now have access to products from every corner of the world. They can just order what they want, and have it shipped from the other corner of the world, right to their doorstep—especially with ventures like Grasshopper that we just started where last mile delivery becomes simplified and extremely economical. So what’s stopping your consumers from switching to a international competitor now?”

Herath adds that local retailers who go online and maintain their presence in the e commerce sphere will stay at the top of the consumer mind as people spend more and more of their time focused on screens.

“Everything you need to make e commerce work in Sri Lanka is there. There are no more excuses for failing at preparing your business for the inevitable future.”

Herath has connected an entire network of businesses and collaborators that can help any company to start their e commerce success story in Sri Lanka. He says that everything from infrastructure builders to delivery is now available in the country, leaving no room to hold back on the exponential growth that online retail world offers retailers. “You cannot say that there are no payment gateways in Sri Lanka—it’s there; you cannot say that there is no consumer adaptation here in the island—it’s clearly there; you cannot say there are no last mile delivery—companies like Grasshoppers are international award-winning experts at it. So, Sri Lankan retailers really have no excuses to get their online game right. It’s the future of retail, and with everything you need available in the country, what are you waiting for? Go on, make your business future-proof.

Source- Daily FT- 22/1/2019

 

Posted by Curious Angel in Review Articles

Keep Calm and Buy a Handbag Ladies!! An Ode to all Sri Lankan Shopaholics

Buy Designer Quality Handbags in Sri Lanka.

A lady’s handbag is a passage to her soul. The design of the bag shows what kind of person she is, is she simple, classy, EXTRA, Gothic, chic,artistic, practical, trendy well i can seriously throw in a lot more adjectives but in simple terms by looking at the lady’s handbag we can get to know a lot about her therefore LADIES, make sure you get hold of the most suitable handbag.

But before lets get to know about the history of handbags, well firstly handbags have been a part of human life ever since humans had precious things to carry around, picture the stone age man carrying his stones around in a small bag well that is exactly how old handbags are with time this means of carrying important things around ended up becoming a status symbol to be precise this started during the Egyptian civilization where there little bags or “girdles” were decorated with precious jewels and fast forward to the 21st century Handbags have moved away from its practical usage into a fashion statement.

What is your prediction for the future of handbags? well i personally think that handbags must be functional and beautiful. Investing in an expensive and timeless piece is always worth it. Trust me.

Here are some essentials for your handbag collection;

Black and Functional

Ladies invest on a simple black handbag because it is extremely versatile and can be carried along with any look may it be a night out or to work.

Here are a few suggestions from our collection;

Vacation Bag

We live in an island so make sure to invest your hard earned money on a nice. BIG and colourful bag. Get hold of a bag that reminds you of sunshine, specially if you are heading towards the coastal area.

But if you are traveling towards the inner lands of Sri Lanka we suggest a simple white bag, it is classy and functional with a lady like hint.

“Spice it up” bag

We all need a slightly avantgard bag something a bit more extravagant suitable for a night out after work big enough to carry all the essentials perhaps a spare pair of flats because not all of us are superwomen to be walking around in heels for hours.

The fashion industry is constantly changing and yet handbags are such timeless items that will be in existence in different shapes, sizes and forms. Do you think it is essential to change your handbags to keep up with the trends or invest in a few handbags which can be used for different occasions? comment your opinions below.

Posted by Curious Angel in Review Articles

Never forget to carry a piece of home when you go to work

“The Joy Maker”

The alarm clock rings and it is another day,

After my cup of tea, I am on my way,

Yes, it is December and everyone is on holiday,

But here I am leaving my family.


All I want to do is to make you proud,

Yes, I work night and day to make sure your delighted,

My job is to create happiness in every neighborhood,

Thank you for loving me even when I’m beyond.


Thank you for the motivation and the patience,

Thank you for tolerating the long hours and silence,

Yes, I might forget to eat, I might be living in somnolence,

The hours are drawing near and I will be back in your presence.


It was truly beautiful to see how our loved ones understood our sacrifice. All this is for our Kapruka,We are a family, One family unbroken, entwined with love and unconditional dedication. Hold on we will come home soon but today we choose to make someone else smile.

Posted by Curious Angel in Review Articles
What does it take for a MAINSTREAM E-COMMERCE PLAYER LIKE KAPRUKA TO BEAT BREAD AND BUTTER AD COMPANIES IN THEIR space?

What does it take for a MAINSTREAM E-COMMERCE PLAYER LIKE KAPRUKA TO BEAT BREAD AND BUTTER AD COMPANIES IN THEIR space?

Kapruka clinched the SLT ZERO ONE AWARD FOR DIGITAL EXCELLENCE IN MARKETING IN THE MOST COMPETITIVE RETAIL SECTOR, beating top Brand campaigns crafted by award winning agencies at possibly half the cost. But why did we win this title? It is a very simple fact, no agency or any organization can live, breathe, eat, sleep and dream your brand, no one understands the true meaning and value of your organization but yourself.

Kapruka is an organization dedicated to making people happy, it’s not just another organization, each day our employees walk in through the gates of Kapruka thinking of the different people they are going delight, our goal is to put a smile on the faces of our customers.This year’s Valentines Campaign was no different, our talented marketing team led by Suresh Eranda wanted a simple and creative campaign that was relevant for everyone, who has won and lost this incredible battle called “LOVE”. Kapruka is a relatable brand with a reputation for opening the eyes of our customers and allowing them to see the bigger picture, it’s often tear jerking where we address matters often left ignored, but that is our recipe for being so close to our ever growing customer base.

This campaign had many obstacles, but we as a company was able to pull off a record-breaking growth rate in Kapruka’s history and more importantly were able to receive many valuable feedback from customers, celebrities, and most stakeholders who are connected to our business. This was a great campaign for us as an organization and also set the tone in believing how much we can achieve through using digital media effectively.

Social media collaborators and content creators like Wasthi and FTT played a huge part in making our campaign so successful. Firstly, Kapruka repositioned the perception of a “Gift” by creating an impactful advert and aggressive marketing campaign together with FTT with the tag “හැම ආදර කතාවකම මතක හිටන තෑග්ගක් තියනවා” line depicting how every memory is bound to a gift encouraging our customers to purchase our product to create a unique memory this Valentines’.“Wasthi” moved away from their usual type of videos and created a video for Valentines’ called “නුරාවනි “, where product placement was used successfully as the bouquet used in this video resulted in being the highest selling item. “Nurawani” was #1 trending in YouTube and became viral in multiple social media platforms.

      

Kapruka was able to show that marriage does not mean it is the end of a love story, however many couples feel the affection and romance declining especially after having children. Kapruka created a marketing campaign that would rekindle this love that’s been hidden and forgotten by showing old memories and arousing lost memories of how a tiny gesture of love, ended up making a person extremely happy and how they should redo this or continue this habit.Kapruka produced a commercial which highlights how important to sustain a healthy marriage life through this occasion by gifting, which has no age barrier from the millennial to Gen X.

Kapruka was able to recognise that No one feels more upset, left-out and bitter during valentine’s than the loners, Kapruka included this segment as well. A social experiment was conducted where participants were asked questions about their first love and many people answered that their first love is their parents. Then Kapruka altered the common perception of Valentines only being for lovers into a day that celebrates love in general, love which is of many different forms which could be parental, friendship or a simple gesture of showing appreciation to a person who means a great deal to an individual.

Kapruka being proactive and tackling all the sudden market threats successfully was able to penetrate into the rural markets with most sales coming from the outskirts of the country even as far as Jaffna and the marketing campaign focusing on the parents created a tremendous social uproar as it was able to melt anybody’s heart.

THIS IS THE SECRET OF OUR SUCCESS!

 


 

Posted by Curious Angel in Review Articles, 1 comment