The consumer of today has been prompted by the COVID-19 pandemic to spend as little time as possible at a grocery shop or to find a way to shop without leaving home.
So, having your grocery sent right to your doorstep is a brilliant option for those who are not willing to risk a trip to the shops.
Admittedly, the online market is robust and difficult to crack.
Fears of coronavirus have resulted in a surge in demand for grocery delivery.
As the virus spreads, on-demand grocery delivery services in South Africa are seeing remarkable growth.
Existing players are overwhelmed by the number of customers requesting on-demand grocery delivery.
On-demand grocery business is very attractive
The on-demand grocery business is very attractive at the moment and could draw in new aggressive startups.
On-demand grocery delivery is the future, and black-owned convenience online store Retail Bay is looking to take its business to the next level and expand its operations.
Retail Bay, which was founded in 2013, has quietly created an e-commerce business that sources and delivers groceries to its growing clientele.
Katlego Molosha, the co-founder of Retail Bay, confidently says:
“The aim is not to defeat our competitors in some sort of e-commerce war, but rather to learn from what our competition is doing.
“We don’t have the financial muscle to compete with the current players like Bottles, however, we have home customers already on our platform ready to use the service and this will help us generate revenue.
“Although Retail Bay might not be as big as OneCart or Bottles, it will ensure that we put the right structure in place that will support the kind of growth that we have in mind while setting up the business.”
Over the past few years, Retail Bay has built an impressive following from loyal customers.
“The main takeaway from our e-commerce startup story is we’ve grown our customer base (audience) organically before launching the business,” explains Molosha, who co-founded the business with friends Sabelo Nkosi and Mamello Moloi.
“Now that we have built up an audience and understand what their needs are, we are in a better position to sell them our products because we will understand their specific needs better than anyone else.
“We have a huge audience that we can easily market our products thus giving our business a big boost.”
Spar franchise owners and Droppa partnerships
Molosha says Retail Bay wants to fulfill a need that will continue to exist in the future – the need for speed in getting your grocery into your cupboard and refrigerator.
As part of commercial plans, Retail Bay is at an advanced stage of talks with Super Spar in Midrand to cater for the local market.
“We plan on offering the service to other areas in Gauteng from August with our partnership with Spar (franchise) owners,” says Molosha.
He says Retail Bay is engaged in retailing general lines of food products, including fresh or prepared meats, poultry, canned and frozen foods, fresh fruits, vegetables, as well as various dairy products.
“I’m pleased to announce that we will also sell liquor,” says Molosha in a recent interview with TechFinancials.
To ensure home delivery of groceries happens on time, Retail Bay has signed a service level agreement with Droppa.
“They will be responsible for delivering orders,” Molosha explains.
“We have a retail account with the company.”
Retail Bay is available in Midrand.
Droppa will service Pretoria (Arcadia, Brooklyn, Montana, Lynnwood, and Menyln.) and Johannesburg (Randburg, Rosebank, and Bryanston).
How Retail Bay was founded
Molosha says Retail Bay was born out of a desire to solve the problem of having to queue to purchase groceries on a payday.
At the time the idea was conceived, Molosha worked as a sales representative for Shoprite in his early 20s.
“Customers would approach me and ask if we (Shoprite) could offer a delivery service and when I told my then manager about it, he turned down the idea,” Molosha recalls.
“I then approached my long-time friend Sabelo Nkosi with the idea and he loved it.
“For sure, it is challenging starting any business, but one business that you can start with minimal challenges is a grocery home delivery business.
“Retail Bay is a business that involves helping our customers shop for groceries which we deliver to their homes.
“The bottom line is that we know how to source groceries and how to get them delivered to your customers.”