Behind the business with Pockit
Left to right: Virraj Jatania, Danny Jatania and Yuvraj Jatania
Payment card company Pockit, launched fully 6 months ago. Danny Jatania, CEO of Pockit, took Bdaily behind the business.
What key challenges has your company recently faced?
Pockit was fully launched 6 months ago (November 2011) and has brought on many challenges since. Some of the most notable are as follows:
1. Forming partnerships with key retailers and service providers – this was one of our early challenges because in order to launch Pockit we required exclusive deals and offers that would attract visitors and customers. We had to present the idea of Pockit to the likes of Aviva, Talk Talk, Marks & Spencer and many others when we had no customers which was extremely challenging but proved fruitful. We have some great deals and offers for our cardholders such as 6% cashback at M&S, up to 15% additional discount with Aviva and much more.
2. Finding the right outsourcing partners – as a startup we have outsourced a few functions of the business to third parties in order to be able to manage the operations of the business more effectively. Identifying and forming relationships with such partners has been challenging because many of them push for long term contracts and charge some sort of fixed cost. As a startup we need to remain flexible and keep a close eye on our cash flow. Hence finding partners who are able to accommodate such a situation has been challenging but not without reward as we work with some fantastic third parties.
3. Building the right team – as Pockit grows naturally the team will too. We’re already starting to bring on exciting and talented employees and we are always on the lookout for people who could improve our team. However, building the team is not just about talent but also about finding the right people who have the right attitudes and get along with the rest of the team. Getting the right mix of talent, skills and attitude can be challenging. We often use interns as a way to unearth bright and creative minds who are looking to be part of something new and this has been an extremely effective method for us.
What is your biggest achievement over the past 12 months?
Our biggest achievement so far has been to negotiate great cashback offers and discounts from some of the nation’s biggest brands such as M&S, TalkTalk, Aviva, Comet, B&Q, Toys R Us and most recently Zizzi
restaurants. Our offers are very competitive and it was a big achievement and honor to bring on board such
household names. Part of our strategy is to continuously establish new partnerships with other retailers and
service providers allowing our cardholders to get the best price on whatever they need to buy.
What is your biggest focus for the coming year?
Our biggest focus is to build our cardholder base and see this number rise even more – however, it’s also our aim to see the amount our cardholders save from using the Pockit prepaid card increase on an on-going basis and we believe partnering with new retail partners and service providers will help greatly. Our goal is to have at least 30,000 cardholders in the next year. One of the key routes to market we’ll be focusing on to achieve this is providing the Pockit prepaid card to employees (as a voluntary benefit or employer provided benefit) and members of affinity groups. This strategy in parallel to our online marketing and sales activities will allow us to generate revenue from both online and offline marketing.
If you had to choose one top piece of advice for someone just starting out in business, or is currently operating within your industry sector, what would it be?
To someone starting out in business I would say, it’s really important to open up communications with your
customers early on because they’re the ones who are going to tell you what works well with your product.
For example, when Pockit was in soft launch our initial proposition to consumers was slightly different (the
prepaid card was not the main focus rather membership to the Pockit site was the key focus) it was only after researching our early customers’ behaviour that we began to understand that the prepaid card was the most valuable aspect. This resulted in us changing our business model slightly to what you see now on the Pockit website - this led to an even greater number of sign-ups taking place. I think this example also stresses the need for a start-up to be flexible and ready to adapt to the need of their customers.
Can you share with us your view of the current landscape of business, in this region or generally and where your organisation sits within it?
As you will be aware, there is no break from the economic crises that has engulfed the UK and other parts of the world since 2008. Our view is that the landscape is improving but there is still a long way to go and the current wave of new start-up businesses will help get us out of the recession. From a business perspective, Pockit is ideal for a downturn because it helps people in the UK save money on their everyday essential expenditure. Our view is that UK consumers are becoming savvier with their shopping and finding ways to make savings, get discounts and earn cashback therefore our organisation sits quite well in the current landscape of business and is primed for a long period of growth.
This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Pockit .
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