Himanshoo Patil, Chief Executive Officer, EPRS BuySmart Pvt. Ltd, talks exclusively to Thinking Aloud about IoT and how SMEs can benefit from EPRS BuySmart solutions
TA: More and more companies are now looking to join the IoT (Internet of Things) bandwagon. How big a role will EPRS Buy Smart play in the thick of things?
HP: As of now, we are only available on the smartphone device & web. But we surely will extend our services, if we see first-hand demand coming in, from our retailers (our business partners)
Our model is B2B2C, where we work with distributors, retailers and they in turn with end consumers. However, less than 30% of our current retailer base is still not on the mobile app itself. Our retailers are people from the bottom of the pyramid strata hence; IoT awareness itself is not there. The IoT innovations will take some time to reach out to these markets.
However, the EPRS platform completely supports the extensibility of taking all their service through IoT devices. It is about the IoT penetration, retailers comfort and preference to undertake transaction on those devices.
From a distribution side, EPRS Buy Smart is actively looking at IoT product partners who are looking to distribute their products and services through our platform and network.
TA: Electronic distribution services bank a lot on enterprise computer solutions, services & embedded technology. What are the factors that can further enhance the success rate?
HP: A user friendly interface, immense scalability to handle peak transactions and faster processing at the backend software are factors that will enhance the success rate of our service. Quick response and successful transactions will decide the effectiveness of the technology which is deployed at the backend. High success rate in transactions will ultimately give comfort to everybody on the channel once transactions are done.
Moreover, we would be relying on the automated processes & services through computer solutions and embedded technology than the human interface selling the service. Because most of these people are from bottom of the pyramid socio background, they tend to focus on the end result than just the technology deployed.
TA: Website & online adoption among SMEs is expected to grow 3 times by 2020. What are EPRS Buy Smart’s plans to tap this potential in the pipeline?
HP: In terms of websites and online adoption we are looking forward to train the SME owners in a very inclusive way that gives them access to all the online services. The training in software will also enable them to get more and more online services to sell and connect with other as well as our SME ecosystem. This community can then create a further stronger SME movement for growth, empowerment, prosperity and relationships.
TA: How can the electronic distribution companies help develop complete IT solutions while streamlining development and delivery?
HP: The engagement with retailer starts with one essential service morphing into 10 more services. Once this happens over a period of time, then module by module companies can help the retailers manage their Point of Sales, Customer, Inventory, MIS through one single manageable software.
Electronic distribution companies can create a complete ecosystem for entrepreneurs and SME owners with the help of single software by centralizing the whole process and business for them. We are connecting service providers, distributors and end consumers. This forms a huge network or a hive, which will enable the accurate documentation as well as improved connectivity at every level. It’s just like the centralized connected system at a national level. In short an IT solution to centralize every process and documentation at every level.
TA: Amongst the wide range of services that EPRS Buy Smart offers, which services are the most pivotal to boost the SME industry?
HP: We believe that Financial Services & E-distribution are the most critical and pivotal in shaping the future of the SME industry. As the SME industry is very under-served, we will surely bring the right innovation in services to these audience and markets. In the next 5-10 years we will see huge growth coming from these services.