Yeebo is a market that makes an attempt to digitally join craftspersons with potential consumers

In the preliminary levels of the pandemic, one of many issues that got here to the fore was the necessity to help indigenous, sustainably produced items which have a decrease carbon footprint, and nurture artisan households as properly. With tourism coming to a standstill, there was a have to take handmade merchandise from artisan villages on to consumers.

A couple of e-commerce giants stepped in to inventory merchandise from the handloom and craft sector, however there’s all the time room for extra. Yeebo, a month-old market that connects artisans to the consumers straight, is taking a step in the direction of plugging the present gaps. Founded by Delhi-based Maahin Puri and Ikshita Puri, the app has on board greater than 300 artisans and has been downloaded by greater than 3,000 potential consumers.

The cell software interface is constructed such that artisans can arrange their store on Yeebo following just a few steps, even when they aren’t tech-savvy: “Some of the villages we visited are off Google Maps and we found incredible handmade products there. Many artisans are not comfortable with browsing websites, but they use mobile apps easily. That helped us develop Yeebo,” says Maahin, a Duke University graduate in Economics and Computer Science.

After commencement, he returned from the US, wanting to make use of know-how to assist small companies: “Technology can be an equaliser. We learnt that there’s a huge untapped sector where nearly 70 lakh artisans (according to Development Commissioner — Handicrafts, Ministry of Textiles, Government of India website) are involved in handmade products — textiles and crafts,” says Maahin. Maahin was joined by Ikshita Puri, who’s pursuing her Bachelor of Arts in Computer Science on the University of California, Berkeley.

Yeebo started as a bootstrapped enterprise with private funds, however talks are on with enterprise capital corporations to lift a seed spherical.

Award-winning Artisans

The artisans on board Yeebo hail from completely different Indian states — these specialising in Kashmiri shawls, blue pottery from Rajasthan, Rogan artwork from Kutch and Madhubani (Mithila) work from Bihar, to call just a few. There are award-winning grasp craftspeople as properly: Padma Shri awardee Abdul Gafur Khatri (Rogan artwork), Shilp guru Ram Gopal (Blue pottery) and National award winner Abid Nabi (Woodcraft).

Some of the award-winning artisans in India have their very own web sites, designed with the assistance of youthful members of their households, however many artisans have been largely counting on conventional channels of real-time exhibitions to faucet consumers.

Maahin and Ikshita share that in their visits to craft villages close to Delhi, Meerut and Jaipur, they learnt that many artisans had not heard of widespread e-commerce giants. Others had been cautious of promoting alongside machine-made merchandise which might be bought on reductions: “They aren’t comfortable with competitive pricing for handmade products,” says Maahin.

Artisans add photographs and pricing particulars of their merchandise and as soon as an order is positioned, the product is shipped to the client by the artisan. “The transaction is between the craftspeople and buyers; we take a 10% commission,” say the founders.

The platform is a piece in progress. At the second, artisans listing their merchandise with photographs and little else. There is scope for brief bios that element the work of an artisan or a quick word of the craft and its significance. “We plan to put up those in the coming weeks,” says Maahin. Plans are additionally on to popularise the platform via on-line and offline modes, via partnerships with ShareChat, Modern Bazaar and the Ministry of Textiles.

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