After working closely to organise events during their college days, five friends, alumni of St Xavier’s College, have now pooled their talents to set up an online marketplace that brings you the best from traditional Indian sweet shops. Called mymithaiwala.com, the portal allows users to pick their favourite delicacies from popular sweet shops in Dadar and have them delivered at their doorstep.
Founders (from left) Ajinkya Shinde, Naresh Pingale, Siddhant Sarpate, Om Pathre and Deepak Dutt
"After graduation, all of us were employed in our respective domains, but we always wanted to do something different from the regular 9 to 5 jobs, and so, we started our own venture," shares Om Pathre, one of the founders of the portal that went live in December, last year. "After brainstorming, we zeroed in on the food industry and chose the niche segment of Indian traditional sweet shops since no one had tapped into the area. We began working on the idea from June 2015. Back then, it was a weekend pursuit since we had full-time jobs," he adds.
The mithai on offer
The team approached sweet shops and pitched the idea. "While some appreciated the concept, others rejected us saying that it would never work. However, we chose to go ahead with partners who trusted us. We went ahead when we realised that this was more than just an idea on paper, and would work out unless we gave it our 100 per cent. We decided to quit our jobs by the end of 2015," says Pathre.
A screenshot of the website
The website currently works with shops located in Dadar and delivers from Andheri and Thane to South Mumbai. "We were clear that we wanted to get popular sweet shops on board to begin with because people would already know of them and be assured of the quality and taste," reasons Pathre. In the first two months, the portal launched with two shops — Aaswad Upahar and Mithaigruh and Chanderkar Sweets — and now plans to work with seven others in the locality.
While generating funds, getting people to warm up to the novel idea and creating a user-friendly interface for the website remain their main challenges, the team has managed to deliver over a 100 orders in the past two months and generate a revenue of over Rs 50,000 for all shops combined.
As soon as talks with angel investors materialise, the five friends intend to expand their current setup to introduce a mobile app, which will simplify the process of ordering further, partner with more sweet shops and perhaps, dabble in the space of non-Indian desserts too.
Log on to: www.mymithaiwala.com